Let’s go back to the year 2001. George Bush had just begun his term. Airport security was a lot faster. Michael Jordan played for the Wizards – that year, the Wizards drafted Kwame Brown first overall. That same year, some kid named Jason Collins made his debut, too. Both, talent-wise, at least, have made little affect on the league. But Jason Collins completely shocked the world of sports when he announced he was gay this april, that put Kwame Brown in the dust.
But guess who had a job at the beginning of this season? Even though everybody knew he was an injury risk and washed out, the 76ers took him in 2012 and even after averaging 1.9 points a game, didn’t get rid of him. Now, to be fair, Kwame Brown did get waived two months ago. Which takes us to Joel Anthony, another center that has accomplished literally nothing in his career and could’ve been traded or waived anytime. But no, a player who is averaging 0.6 points a game and 0.6 rebounds a game is still good enough for the Heat. Last year, he gave the Heat 87 points, about 40 more than Jason Collins, which is not the difference for the Heat, almost ever.
There are a couple more examples, although it’s hard to find. I wouldn’t recommend looking. But the point I’m making is that there are players in the NBA that do what Jason Collins did and have a job.
Now, it’s not a complete outrage. Jason Collins, for what it’s worth, was a pretty bad player. He averaged 0.7 points a game last year – but that just wasn’t that much worse than some other players.
So it leaves me with this question.
Why isn’t Jason Collins playing right now?
A commonly used reason is that it’s a lot of PR to take on for a player who will do very little. But isn’t there no such thing as bad publicity?
Another reason used is that Jason Collins isn’t good enough. I’ve already debunked that one.
The other most commonly used one is that NBA owners are homophobes. I hope that one isn’t true, or else the NBA may lose me as a fan.
Until this gets resolved, all players who are gay in the NBA are going to be scared to come out as gay, and it’s going to take another Jason Collins.
At the beginning, we thought it was a huge step. Unless Jason Collins gets signed – we aren’t doing as well as we thought.