NBA Round-Up: Rick Welts Is Out

Senior Writer

Haha, no I don’t mean that Rick Welts has been fired, sillies. I mean that the President of the Phoenix Suns is gay, as per an interview published in the New York Times yesterday. And of course he’s gay. He’s wearing a pink shirt, for the love of Lady Gaga. In all seriousness, though, the 58-year old chose to finally break his silence to help create a conversation for all male team sports about homosexuality.

“This is one of the last industries where the subject is off limits,” said Mr. Welts, who stands now as a true rarity, a man prominently employed in professional men’s team sports, willing to declare his homosexuality. “Nobody’s comfortable in engaging in a conversation.” (Via New York Times)

It’s definitely an important conversation and I hope that Welts’ sacrifice isn’t for naught. Statistics would strongly suggest that there are many gay men in professional sports, and it must be difficult for them to keep hiding their real identities behind fears of discrimination and physical threats. After all, they can’t all be as macho as Johnny Weir.

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Chicago Bulls 103, Miami Heat 82 (Series: 1-0 CHI)

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That was Taj Gibson’s first monster dunk against the Miami Heat last night – he had two – and I think it says it all that Taj Gibson had two monster dunks. The Bulls led the Heat by 15 with 5:35 left in the game and I thought to myself, “Goodness, I am ridiculously handsome and this has ‘Here comes LeBron James’ written all over it.” Instead, LeBron was a non-factor as Chris Bosh (30 points) tried his hardest to keep the Heat in the game, but 3-pointers by Luol Deng and Kyle Korver pushed the game out of reach in the closing minutes.

Derrick Rose scored 28 while missing 12 shots, but his less-than-stellar shooting percentage was saved by LeBron and Dwyane Wade, who combined for just 33 points while missing 10 shots each. Oh, and here’s that second dunk by Gibson:

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Oklahoma City Thunder 105, Memphis Grizzlies 90 (Series: 4-3 OKC)

FINALLY! Good Lord, you guys, take your sweet F-ing time finishing a series, why don’t you? Both teams shot their collective wad with that triple overtime score-apalooza all the way back on last Monday in Game 4, so it was bad enough that we had to sit through their sputtering and sloppity slop for three more games. Thankfully, Kevin Durant showed up and brough 39 of his friends with him for Game 7 and the Thunder can finally face their destiny in the Western Conference Finals against the Dallas Mavericks.

As for the Memphis Grizzlies, this was a hell of a run for an 8-seed, especially considering the team’s executives made under-the-radar, insignificant moves prior to the season’s trade deadline, and they ended up besting any other deals made this season. But this was something special for the people of Memphis as they go through the horrors and losses associated with the natural disasters that are currently flooding the city’s streets, destroying homes and ruining businesses. Even as an Orlando Magic fan (if I’ve never mentioned that before), I hope the Grizzlies squash the ongoing rumors of Zach Randolph to the Magic for the grab bag of Brandon Bass and the bench and keep this band together, bring in another solid veteran, and contend again next year.

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