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Sports

May 1, 2013

NBA team that signs Collins will be courageous

Methuen man remembers when told friends he was gay

While many people call Jason Collins’ announcement to the world on Monday, though his Sports Illustrated essay, that he is gay as a historic day for the gay movement, I disagree.

While Collins, who played 32 games for the Boston Celtics before being dealt for Jordan Crawford, is being commended for his “courage,” the response to his announcement has been 99 percent positive.

The support, from Kobe Bryant to Shaquille O’Neal to Michelle Obama has been overwhelmingly supportive.

The real courage, though, will come this summer when some NBA team, in need of a backup, journeyman center — every team needs one of those, right? — offers Collins a contract.

Collins’ career is either over or on life support. His scoring average the last seven years has been, in order, 2.1, 2.0, 1.8, 0.7, 2.0, 1.3 and 1.1 points a game while his rebound average per game has been 4.0, 2.5, 2.3, 0.6, 2.1, 1.6 and 1.5.

According to those in the know, Collins is a true gentleman. He’s not only articulate — his coming out piece in Sports Illustrated was very well done — and clean cut, but he’s approachable and usually bearing a grin.

While he is easy to root for, he will have little to do with his future as a “current” pro athlete willing to take a stand. It will be up to a team, which hopefully isn’t looking for a media frenzy, but a guy who can fill in at center in a pinch.

Farrington recalls when he ‘came out’

Back around 1980, when Charlie Farrington was still “in the closet,” he was petrified his friends and associates would know the real Charlie Farrington.

“You’d go away on vacation and people would ask where you are going and you didn’t always tell the truth,” said the well-known area runner, who is now 68. “Or I’d tell people I’m going out with friends and they’d ask, ‘Who are they?’ It was stressful to be honest, hiding who you were from people you liked. Very stressful.”

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