The Pistons have “exploratory” interest in openly gay center Jason Collins

By Anthony Caruso III
The Capital Sports Report
Owner/Managing Editor/Sr. Writer

The Detroit Pistons have overhauled their roster this season.

Jason Collins (Getty Images)

Jason Collins (Getty Images)

And their next addition – if he signs with the Pistons – could be an historic move. The team is interested in free agent center Jason Collins.

Collins became the first openly gay active player in the NBA. But since he announced that he was gay in late April, there was little interest in his talents before now.

The Brooklyn Nets kicked the tires on potentially adding Collins earlier this summer. However, a deal did not come together after that.

The Pistons have called their interest in Collins as “exploratory.” Yet, the Pistons may be the best landing spot for the veteran, as he served as a back up throughout much of his career.

With the Pistons, the 34-year-old center can provide veteran leadership to the Pistons front court duo of Greg Monroe and Andre Drummond. Monroe and Drummond are still young in the league, and can learn a lot from Collins.

Also, he could give the Pistons a defensive post presence on a limited basis, which they previously had in Rasheed Wallace. Sheed, as he was called, is now a Pistons assistant coach.

Collins played in 38 games overall during the 2012-13 season. He played in 32 games with the Boston Celtics, before being picked up by the Washington Wizards, where he played in 6 games. He averaged less than 2 points a game with the Celtics and Wizards.

He has played in 713 career games in the NBA, but has played 30-49 games a season since the 2008-09 season. Prior to that, he was averaging above 70 games a season.

He has played for the New Jersey Nets, Memphis Grizzlies, Minnesota Timberwolves, Atlanta Hawks, the Celtics, and Wizards.

Right now, there’s two actively gay athletes in professional sports in the United States. Collins would be the third place should he sign with an NBA team.

Megan Rapinoe, who is a member of the US Soccer women’s national team, came out as gay in July 2012. She plays for the Seattle Reign FC in the National Women’s Soccer League.

Robbie Rogers, who is also a soccer player, announced that he was gay in February 2013. He presently plays for the Los Angeles Galaxy in Major League Soccer.

When Rogers signed with the Galaxy in May after a tryout with the team, he became the first openly gay male athlete in Major League Soccer. Also, he became the first openly gay male athlete in any of the five major North American sports teams, which includes the NBA, Major League Baseball, the NHL, and the National Football League.

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