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Beyond the Baseline

Tennis players react to NBA center Jason Collins announcing he's gay

Martina Navratilova Martina Navratilova tweeted that Jason Collins will sleep a lot better now after coming out. (Buda Mendes/Getty Images)

Tennis players took to Twitter in support of NBA center Jason Collins' open letter in Sports Illustrated announcing that he's gay. With that, Collins became the first male professional athlete from a major team sport to come out of the closet during his career.

Not surprisingly, Martina Navratilova, who came out in 1981, led the charge of support and encouragement.

Update: Here's a story about Collins and gays in sports that Navratilova wrote Monday for Sports Illustrated.

https://twitter.com/Martina/status/328907441746108416

https://twitter.com/Martina/status/328907790569586688

https://twitter.com/Martina/status/328914177588592641

https://twitter.com/andyroddick/status/328921772328099840

https://twitter.com/MardyFish/status/328892682262941699

https://twitter.com/rennaestubbs/status/328908621285056512

https://twitter.com/MRusselltennis/status/328960493425401856

https://twitter.com/justingimelstob/status/328951494416146432

Billie Jean King also tweeted via TwitLonger:

I am thrilled @JasonCollins34 was able to come out on his own terms and, as he put it, is ready to continue the conversation. This is a day of celebration for the LGBT community and for all of us. I look forward to the day when the news of anyone coming out, is a non-issue and once we reach that point we will know we have arrived.

Update: Former ATP pro Michael Joyce also weighed in on Twitter:

https://twitter.com/mikejoyce73/status/328967720097968129

Joyce later elaborated on his tweet during exchanges with others on Twitter.
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