Larry Johnson says homosexuality doesn’t belong in men’s locker room


larry-johnson-charlotteDespite the incredible outpouring of support for NBA player Jason Collins after he came out as gay on Monday, there were still some negative responses.

On Monday, NBA center Jason Collins announced he is gay, becoming the first active male player in a major American team sport to come out.

A series of Tweets from former NBA All-Star Larry Johnson, who still works as a business operations representative for the New York Knicks, was particularly revealing about how some players may respond to playing beside someone who is gay.

Johnson’s opposition to homosexuality seems to be at least partially motivated by his Islamic faith, but also reflects some general insecurities players may have in the locker room.

“I don’t Jason Collins personally but he seems like a great guy. Me personally gay men in the locked room would make me uncomfortable,” Johnson tweeted. “I don’t judge anyone!! I have fallen short of the grace of Allah myself, but stop trying to make this acceptable.”

Johnson, a two-time NBA All-Star (1993, 1995) played 10 years in the NBA, 5 of them with the Knicks.

Johnson averaged double-double in his first two seasons with the Charlotte Hornets (19.2 ppg, 11 rpg and 22.1 ppg, 10.5 rpg respectively). He averaged double figures in scoring in 9 of his 10 NBA seasons.

After being traded from the Charlotte Hornets to the Knicks before the 1995-1996 season, Johnson was never the same player he was in Charlotte, because of injuries and back pains.

Johnson led the NBA in minutes per game during the 1992-93 season, averaging 40.5 mpg. He was named to the NBA All-Star team twice, in 1993 and 1995.

Johnson averaged his best 15.5 ppg and 5.7 rpg with NYK in 1997-98. He retired after the 2000-2001 season.

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