The Brooklyn Nets will sign center Jason Collins for the remainder of the season on Saturday, according to multiple sources with knowledge of the situation.
Sources told ESPN.com on Tuesday that the Nets, who feel they’re getting everything they expected from Collins when they signed him for frontcourt depth Feb. 23, are already operating under the premise that the 34-year-old will finish the season with them even though his second 10-day deal doesn’t expire until after Friday. Sources say that the internal expectation all along was that Collins would be a Net for the rest of the season, from the moment he signed his first 10-day deal, as long he proved that he could still be an effective defender, which he did immediately.
Collins is averaging 9.8 minutes per game off the bench in eight appearances since his historic debut against the Los Angeles Lakers last month, which made him the first openly gay athlete in North America’s four recognized major team sports. ESPN
Many were concerned that Collins remained unsigned for so long because of the potential “controversy” that would follow after he announced he is an openly gay man. That was such an odd meta-statement since the media was responding to potential issues that would be caused by the media.
It’s been a non-issue so far and Collins has contributed exactly what the Nets needed: a big body that can defend and a glue guy in the locker room. Hopefully, this situation allows more athletes in sports across the nation to feel comfortable with expressing their sexual orientation if they choose to do so. – AL