HOUSTON (CBS Houston) – On Monday Jason Collins became the first active professional athlete in the four major American sports leagues to announce he was gay. During practice before Game 4 of the Houston and Oklahoma City playoff series, the Rockets and Thunder gave their initial impressions of Collins’ announcement.
“That’s actually my first time hearing that. I don’t know what to say. I’m really focusing on Game 4.”
“Playing against him, he seems like a great guy. Never got a chance to know him but if he’s happy, then that’s cool.”
“I heard the news this morning. I respect his decision but quite frankly, I’m just focused on getting Game 4.”
Collins, who collaborated on his story with Sports Illustrated‘s Frank Lidz, was drafted in the first-round by the Houston Rockets with the 18th pick in 2001. The Rockets used their three first-round picks (Richard Jefferson, Jason Collins, and Brandon Armstrong) in a deal to acquire the draft rights to Eddie Griffin.
The story appears in the May 6, 2013 issue of Sports Illustrated.