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Lance Bass gave Jason Collins advice on coming out

Posted By KATE STANTON, UPI.com   |   April 30, 2013 at 6:57 PM   |   Comments

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April 30 (UPI) -- Washington Wizards center Jason Collins became the first openly gay male player in the nation's four biggest team sports Monday. "I'm a 34-year-old NBA center. I'm black. And I'm gay," he announced in the Sports Illustrated cover story, which sent major shock waves through the sports world and even prompted a response from President Barack Obama.

So whose advice did Collins seek before making his life-changing decision to come out?

Lance Bass told listeners on his Sirius XM radio show, "Dirty Pop with Lance Bass," that Collins contacted him through a mutual friend.

“He’s been trying to plan this for a very long time, contemplating if he wanted to do this,” Bass said. “In fact, he said he was going to call me months ago but was too scared, because he wanted to tell me."

I gave him some very good advice today because of course everybody wants to interview him…and he was figuring out who would get that first sit down. …he calls and I was like ‘So, how is your day going?’ And he was like ‘Well, just got off the phone with two presidents and Oprah, so pretty good.’

Bass, who announced he was gay on the cover of People magazine in 2006, said he wished he had had more time to come out on his own terms.

So I had 24 hours to decide to do this interview and I did – with People magazine, and I thought it went great. But what I wish I could have done back then was to have a couple of days to sit down with HRC, sit down with GLAAD…get downloaded [on how to handle this].

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