Washington: Veteran basketball player Jason Collins has dropped the bomb by confessing that he is gay.
The National Basketball Association (NBA) veteran, in his own words, has become "the first openly gay athlete playing in a major American team sport."

He revealed his sexuality on Monday for Sports Illustrated magazine. According to magazine reports, Collins was quoted as saying: “I am 34 year old NBA centre player, I am black and I am gay.”

He revealed the secret he had harbored for years in a first-person account published in Sports Illustrated, saying he had gradually become frustrated with having to keep silent on his sexuality.

A 12-year player in the NBA, Collins was quickly enveloped in a wave of support from the White House to tennis player Martina Navratilova, a pioneer for gay athletes in sport.

Collins said he had considered coming out years ago but it was the Boston Marathon bombings this month that convinced him not to wait any more for a perfect moment to come out.

According to sources, dynamic player Collins plans to be in Boston on June 8, marching alongside Kennedy at the city's 2013 gay pride parade.

Players, administrators and some politicians applauded him for taking a stance. Some hailed it as a landmark day in American civil rights.

"I didn't doubt for a second, knowing he was gay, that he would be the one to do it," Kennedy, a Massachusetts Democrat told to the media person.

Los Angeles Lakers star Kobe Bryant took to micro blogging site Twitter to praise Collins. “Don't suffocate who you are because of the ignorance of others," he tweeted, followed by the words "courage" and "support."

On Monday evening, hours after his story appeared on the web, Collins wrote on Twitter: "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."


Latest News from Sports News Desk