Jason Collins Becomes First Openly Gay NBA Player

By Chris Belluschi

Catlin Gabel School, Catlin Speak

On Sunday, February 23rd, Jason Collins became the first openly gay man to play in the NBA.

The 35-year old, 12 season veteran signed a 10 day contract with the Brooklyn Nets, and was made active immediately in order to play against the L.A. Lakers in Los Angeles.

The impact of Collins playing was not lost on persons around the league, with new commissioner Adam Silver saying, “I’m honored, in so many ways, that the NBA presented to him a comfortable environment in which he both felt comfortable coming out last April, and one in which an NBA team felt comfortable signing him based on his ability, and in no way to make a political statement.”

Collins reiterated the importance that the focus stays on basketball, saying, “I don’t have time to really think about history right now.”

Noteworthy too is the fact the Nets are owned by Russian Billionaire Mikhail Prokhorov, a challenger of Vladimir Putin in the 2012 presidential elections, and noted proponent for gay rights.

The Nets prevailed in the game, beating the Lakers 108-102. Collins played eleven minutes in the game.

About Grace Masback

Grace Masback, 17, aspires to give voice to the voiceless and holds the modest ambition of becoming the voice of Gen Z. Frustrated by the dearth of impactful platforms for teen journalists, she founded WANT, a news, sports, and entertainment website that aggregates the best in high school journalism from school newspapers and teen bloggers around the world (www.wantnewsforteens.com).

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