Jason Collins explains how he came out to his twin brother

The NBA star kept his sexual orientation hidden from his family well into adulthood

By Prachi Gupta

Published May 16, 2013 12:47PM (EDT)

NBA center Jason Collins, who made sports history when he came out as the first openly gay male professional athlete, stopped by "Jimmy Kimmel Live" last night with his twin brother, former NBA player Jarron Collins. The two discussed how Jason came out to his brother, who had been trying to set him up on dates with women until just a few years ago.

Collins said he waited so long for fear of rejection: "He's my best friend, and any time you come out to someone, you always have the apprehension that they're going to reject you."

"Oh, come on. He's my twin brother," said Jarron. "Of course I was going to be supportive of him all the time."

When Kimmel asked, "Do you wish you had done this a long time ago, now?" Collins responded: "I wasn't ready. I wasn't to that point. When we had the lockout, that's when I really focused on the rest of my life and started thinking about, 'I'm not just a basketball player.'"

Prachi Gupta

Prachi Gupta is an Assistant News Editor for Salon, focusing on pop culture. Follow her on Twitter at @prachigu or email her at pgupta@salon.com.

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Coming Out Gay Jason Collins Jimmy Kimmel Live Video