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ESPN regrets Broussard comment

ESPN says it regrets comment on Collins

NEW YORK – ESPN said it regrets the “distraction” caused by one of its reporters who described Jason Collins as a sinner after the NBA center publicly revealed that he was gay.

Chris Broussard, who covers the NBA for ESPN, had said on the air that Collins and others in the NBA who engage in premarital sex or adultery were “walking in open rebellion to God, and to Jesus Christ.” Broussard, a former reporter for The New York Times, spoke during ESPN’s “Outside the Lines” program Monday discussing Collins’ announcement.

In an article in Sports Illustrated, Collins became the first male athlete in one of the country’s four major sports to come out as gay.

ESPN’s Josh Krulewitz said the network regrets that a discussion of personal viewpoints became a “distraction.” The network offered its own view of Collins’ news: “ESPN is fully committed to diversity and welcomes Jason Collins’ announcement.”

During his on-the-air discussion, Broussard described himself as a Christian.

“I don’t agree with homosexuality,” he said. “I think it’s a sin, as I think all sex outside of marriage between a man and a woman is.”

Broussard in an online message Tuesday said that he had previously discussed his point of view about homosexuality publicly.

“As has been the case in the past, my beliefs have not and will not impact my ability to report on the NBA,” he wrote. “... and I have no objection to him or anyone else playing in the NBA.”

Collins, in an interview with The New York Times on Tuesday, noted that he is a Christian, too.

– Associated Press

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