Jason Collins announced that he is gay in this Sports Illustrated story, becoming the first active male athlete in the four major American sports to come out. Here are the reactions of his Wizards' teammates and other co-workers:
Ernie Grunfeld's statement:
"We are extremely proud of Jason and support his decision to live his life proudly and openly. He has been a leader on and off the court and an outstanding teammate throughout his NBA career. Those qualities will continue to serve him both as a player and as a positive role model for others of all sexual orientation."
Bradley Beal (@RealDealBeal23) April 29, 2013
Bradley Beal on Jason Collins. "His sexual orientation has nothing do with the game of basketball. I’m supportive of him." #wizards— Michael Lee (@MrMichaelLee) April 29, 2013
Beal: "I only see him as a great player first & a great asset to our team & guy who really helped us out. It’s not up to us to judge him."— Michael Lee (@MrMichaelLee) April 29, 2013
Garrett Temple (@GTemp14) April 29, 2013
Garrett Temple on Jason Collins coming out as gay: "I had no idea. Me & Jason, we’re...right next to each other in the locker room."— Michael Lee (@MrMichaelLee) April 29, 2013
Temple: "A lot of ignorant people are going to say some things but..to be the player to do it, much respect to him. I’m real proud of him."— Michael Lee (@MrMichaelLee) April 29, 2013
@jasoncillins34 you have made sports what it should be and that's "OPEN" proud of you for being you. That's jump shot is still weak lol.— Martell Webster (@MartellWebster) April 29, 2013
(From Trevor Ariza's instagram):
@jasoncollins34 much respect to you.It takes a strong dude to be the first. Your a hell of a professional and a hell of a teammate.— trevorariza (@TrevorAriza) April 29, 2013
I appretiate you for coming out. I am sure it takes a lot of courage to do so. I am proud of you. Great teammate! Take care @jasoncollins34— Jan Vesely (@JanVesely24) April 29, 2013
Randy Wittman on Jason Collins: "My thoughts & everything are the same... He’s a quality individual as well as a quality player."— Michael Lee (@MrMichaelLee) April 29, 2013
Emeka Okafor said Jason Collins called this morning to tell him that he was going to come out as gay in an article. "I didn’t expect it."— Michael Lee (@MrMichaelLee) April 29, 2013
All the support I have received today is truly inspirational. I knew that I was choosing the road less traveled but I'm not walking it alone— Jason Collins (@jasoncollins34) April 29, 2013
Thank you to everyone who has reached out to me thru email, texts, calls, tweets, letters, and every other form of communication. #support— Jason Collins (@jasoncollins34) April 29, 2013
Extended comments from Okafor, Temple, Beal and Wittman are here, via Michael Lee.
I am proud of my brother @jasoncollins34. Great teammate and mentor!— John Wall (@John_Wall) April 30, 2013
(More as they come in).