Jason Collins Gets Anti-Gay Taunts From NBA Player
The NBA's first openly gay player, Jason Collins, said that he is keeping his cool despite anti-gay taunts from other players.
In an interview with the New York Daily News, Collins said that an unnamed "knucklehead" from another team called him names during his first month with the Brooklyn Nets.
"One player, one knucklehead from another team," Collins said in an interview with the Daily News. "He's a knucklehead. So I just let it go. Again, that goes back to controlling what you can control. That's how I conduct myself just being professional."
Collins didn't snitch on the player in question, saying that his teammates have been supportive, and he hasn't experienced any negativity from them either on the court or in the locker room.
Despite his attempts to divert the conversation from anything unrelated to basketball when talking to the Nets media, Collins is aware of his role as a civil leader. It can be seen in his Twitter account, where he brings attention to health care reform, marriage equality and an NFL combine update about gay footballer player Michael Sam.
"As an individual, as a person, as a human being, you have a lot of different hats that you wear," he said. "Whether you're an athlete or a human being trying to empower and help others. I'm trying to, again, empower and help others any way that I can."
The Nets are 10-3 since signing Collins, with 10 straight wins at the Barclays Center. Collins, who will play with the Nets for the rest of the season, just showed them you don't mess with Brooklyn.
"This shows that 'distraction' is B.S. That it's about the team, it's about the sport," Collins told the Daily News. "I hope this shows all players that you can still have your life off the court and not have to hide anything. And still have your life on the court or on the field or on the ice, I guess, in hockey. That's a credit to my teammates and the entire Nets organization from ownership to coaching to teammates to everyone."