WALTHAM, Mass. — Shortly before Jason Collins went public with a historic announcement, he called one of his former coaches to give him the groundbreaking news everyone would know in a few hours: Collins is gay.
On the phone with Doc Rivers, though, Collins was not able to give his message as easily and succinctly as he did in print. So, the Celtics coach interrupted him.
“When he called to tell me, you could tell he wanted to tell me, and I told him before he said it: ‘Jason, I could care less what you’re about to tell me,’” Rivers said. “That’s how I feel. I honestly feel that way.”
Rivers was one of the unanimous voices at Celtics practice on Tuesday to lend their support to Collins, who becomes the first male athlete in a major American sport to come out while he is still playing. In a short stint with the Celtics this season, Collins made an impression on his teammates and made some close friends, which is why two of the calls he made prior to the story breaking were to Rivers ...