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How many openly gay NBA players are there?

Basketball has been evolving over the years, and these days the industry is made up of diverse individuals who have worked hard to get to where they are today. One aspect of diversity that has gained significant attention in recent years is sexual orientation, with more players coming out as openly gay. The NBA is no exception, and we are seeing an increase in the number of openly gay players. But, how many openly gay NBA players are there?

Statistics on Openly Gay NBA Players

To date, there have been at least six gay men who have come out publicly while still competing in professional basketball. These players include:

  • Jason Collins, who played for the Brooklyn Nets, Washington Wizards, Boston Celtics, Atlanta Hawks, and Minnesota Timberwolves.
  • John Amaechi, who played for the Cleveland Cavaliers, Orlando Magic, and Utah Jazz.
  • Ryan Russell, who played for the Dallas Mavericks and the Utah Jazz.
  • Brittney Griner, who played for the Phoenix Mercury in the WNBA and is an openly gay basketball player.
  • Layshia Clarendon, who plays for the New York Liberty and is also an openly gay basketball player.
  • Zeke Upshaw, who was a G League player for the Grand Rapids Drive before his untimely death in 2018.

While these numbers may seem small, it is worth noting that the number of openly gay players in the NBA is likely higher. This is because coming out is a personal decision, and not all players may feel comfortable sharing this aspect of their lives with the public.

Impact of Openly Gay NBA Players

The impact of openly gay NBA players goes beyond the court. These players are role models for LGBTQ+ youth who aspire to play professional basketball, and their visibility helps to break down stereotypes and stigma surrounding the LGBTQ+ community.

One example is the story of Jason Collins, who came out in 2013. His decision to come out was met with both support and backlash, but Collins remained steadfast in his decision. In an interview with ABC News, he said, “I’m still the same person. I’m still going to go out there and work hard. I’m still going to compete.” Collins went on to become an advocate for LGBTQ+ rights and was even invited to the White House by former President Barack Obama.

Another example is Brittney Griner, who came out as gay early in her career. She has been vocal about her experiences as an openly gay athlete and has used her platform to advocate for LGBTQ+ rights.

Challenges Faced by Openly Gay NBA Players

Despite the positive impact of openly gay NBA players, there are still challenges that they face. These challenges include discrimination, homophobia, and bigotry. In a team sport like basketball, players rely on their teammates for support and trust. The fear of rejection and isolation can be a significant barrier for athletes struggling with their sexual orientation.

As Layshia Clarendon, an openly gay NBA player, explained in an interview with the Associated Press, “It doesn’t matter how many times we tell stories of people coming out and being amazing athletes. There’s still that fear that we might not be accepted.”

These challenges are why it is important to continue to support and uplift openly gay NBA players. Fans and organizations need to understand the unique challenges that these players face and create an inclusive environment that allows them to thrive on and off the court.


In conclusion, the number of openly gay NBA players may be small, but their impact on the industry and the LGBTQ+ community is significant. These players are role models who break down barriers and help to create a more inclusive society. As we continue to see progress in the LGBTQ+ movement, it is important to support and uplift these players so they can continue to break down barriers and inspire future generations of basketball players.


Who is the best gay basketball player?

It’s difficult to determine who the best gay basketball player is because there are multiple factors to consider when evaluating a player’s skill. However, one openly gay basketball player who has gained attention and respect for his talent on the court is Isaac Humphries.

Humphries is an Australian basketball player who plays in Turkey’s top-flight basketball league. He came out as gay in 2019 and has since become a prominent advocate for LGBTQ+ rights in sports. Before coming out, Humphries had a successful career as a college player in the United States. He played for the University of Kentucky Wildcats, where he was known for his strong defensive play and ability to rebound the ball.

After his college career, Humphries declared for the NBA draft but went undrafted. He then began his professional career in the NBA G League, where he played for the Erie BayHawks and the Lakeland Magic. In 2019, he signed with Turkish team Fenerbahçe Beko, where he has played ever since.

While there may be other gay basketball players who are equally or more talented than Humphries, his bravery in coming out and his dedication to advocating for LGBTQ+ rights in sports make him a trailblazer in the world of basketball. He has stated in interviews that he hopes his visibility as an openly gay athlete will inspire others to follow in his footsteps and live their truth authentically.

While it’s difficult to determine who the best gay basketball player is, Isaac Humphries is a skilled athlete who has gained attention for his talent on the court and his advocacy for LGBTQ+ rights in sports. He is a role model for young athletes who may be struggling with their sexuality and is helping to pave the way for a more inclusive and welcoming sports community.

Is the NBA exclusively for men?

The National Basketball Association (NBA) is a professional basketball league that is primarily composed of teams representing cities in the United States. The league is owned and governed by its teams, and it holds an annual draft in which teams select new players to join their rosters. The NBA is widely regarded as the world’s premier men’s professional basketball league.

To answer the question of whether the NBA is exclusively for men, the answer is yes, the league is exclusively for men. Since the inception of the NBA in 1946, it has been a men’s league. While women have been involved in basketball for many years, including at the highest levels of the game, such as in the Olympics and in professional leagues like the Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA), the NBA remains a men’s league.

The NBA is a highly competitive and physically demanding league, with players required to have a unique combination of size, strength, speed, agility, and skill. The intensity of the game and the demands placed on players would make it extremely difficult for most women to compete at the same level as men. This is not to say that women are not capable of playing the game at a high level, but that the physical differences between men and women make it very challenging for women to compete equally with men in basketball.

While the NBA is exclusively for men, the league has made significant efforts to promote gender equality and diversity in other areas. For example, the league has a number of programs and initiatives aimed at increasing the participation of women and girls in basketball at all levels, from youth sports to coaching and administration. In addition, the NBA has recognized the importance of diversity and inclusion in its workforce and has made efforts to recruit and develop talent from diverse backgrounds.

The NBA is indeed exclusively for men, but the league is committed to promoting gender equality and diversity in other areas. While basketball is a highly challenging and competitive sport, both men and women can enjoy and excel at the game at different levels. The NBA’s efforts to promote gender equality and diversity are commendable and will hopefully lead to greater participation and opportunities for women and girls in basketball in the years to come.

What percent of NBA is black?

The NBA is a highly diverse professional basketball league, with players coming from all over the world and representing various ethnicities and races. However, it is commonly known that the league has a significant number of black players. According to racial equality activist Richard Lapchick’s report in 2021, the NBA was composed of 73.2 percent black players. This is a high percentage considering that black people make up only about 13 percent of the United States population.

The percentage of black players in the NBA has been steadily increasing over the years. This can be attributed to several factors, including the widespread popularity of basketball among young black athletes and the NBA’s robust recruitment programs. Additionally, many black players have been notable for their contributions to the league’s history, making the league an attractive option for aspiring black players.

It’s important to note that while the NBA has a high percentage of black players, the league continues to work towards greater diversity and inclusivity. The league has implemented various efforts to promote equality and diversity in the sport, such as the NBA’s commitment to social justice and racial equality movements. The NBA has also increased its efforts to recruit more female and minority coaches, referees, and executives.

The NBA is comprised of a significant number of black players, with the 2021 percentage of black players being around 73.2 percent. While the league has seen strides towards becoming more inclusive, the NBA has made it a priority to continue promoting diversity and equality within the sport.