In light of Missouri football player and NFL draft-eligible Michael Sam's announcement that he is gay, questions swirled as to why Jason Collins, who came out in April, is still a free agent in the NBA.
Has sexual preference played a part? Newly minted NBA commissioner Adam Silver says that's not the case.
"In terms of Jason not getting signed, based on everything I've been told, it's a basketball decision," Silver told Darren Rovell of ESPN. "Our teams want to win and Jason waited until the very tail end of his career to make that announcement."
Collins was a 12-year veteran of the NBA when he made the announcement, coming out in a Sports Illustrated feature. He turned 35 in December, and in his last season with the Celtics and the Wizards, he averaged 1.0 points and 1.5 rebounds.
Collins hasn't averaged more than two points and four rebounds per game since the 2005-06 season with the (then) New Jersey Nets, the last time he was a true starter in the league.
"We want teams to make the best possible decisions from [a] basketball standpoint," Silver continued. "Ultimately that's what it's all about. I'm sure Jason was never looking for a special favor or a special slot because he had publicly come out."