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John Amaechi Talked To Jason Collins Before He Came Out, Says He Knows Other Gay NBA Players

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Former NBA player John Amaechi, who announced that he was gay four years after his own retirement, has been in high demand as an interview subject since Jason Collins came out earlier this week. Amaechi, who played five seasons in the NBA on three different teams, told CBS Sports Radio that he spoke with Collins before his first-person article in Sports Illustrated was released on Monday. Amaechi revealed that he has also spoken to other current players who are gay.

"There are other people I'm talking to," Amaechi told CBS Sports Radio. "There are other people who I'm chatting to, other people who are perhaps not as amazingly equipped to handle the rigors of this type of media circus as Jason. And when they'll be ready, I don't know."

When asked about whether there are "better players" in the NBA who are gay, Amaechi said he "can't buy into" the notion that " the better the player the more important their sexuality."

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Amaechi became the first former NBA basketball player to come out as gay in 2007, writing a book titled, "Man in the Middle." He has received many interview requests since Collins' annoucement, telling Fox Sports Radio that he has "760 interview requests in my e-mail inbox right now."

The 42-year-old said professional athletes coming out about their sexuality will not be a big deal "when enough people with enough power grow up."

"Right now there are still people with great power in positions of leadership within politics, within business, who behave like 5-year-olds being touched by a girl for the first time when they talk about gay stuff," Amaechi said, via Sports Radio Interviews.

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