Lesbian The Greatest Gay Icons in Sports  

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Professional sports can be a particularly world in which to be openly gay. A lot of homophobia remains today in many major sports, but several athletes have become LGBT trail blazers. Gay athletes have had successful careers in basketball, tennis, and football. and several Olympians have also become gay icons. This list features the greatest gay icons in sports. 

Who is the most famous gay icon in sports? David Beckham, while not gay himself, has stated that he is proud to be a gay icon. WNBA player Sheryl Swoopes announced that she was gay in 2005 and multiple NBA stars and professional soccer players are seen as gay icons as well.

There is a growing list of Olympians who are also gay athletic icons. Olympic diver Greg Louganis, figure skater Johnny Weir, soccer player Megan Rapinoe, and German track and field star Balian Buschbaum are all openly gay.

Who do you think are the greatest gay icons in sports? Cast your votes below.
1 292 VOTES

Matthew Mitcham is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Gay Icons in Sports
Photo: via Wikimedia
Olympic diver Matthew Mitcham publicly came out in 2008. He has stated, "I don’t see sexuality as influencing my beliefs or opinions or perceptions of anybody, whether they’re gay, straight, bi, trans, experimental, I don’t care. I see it as a very uninfluential factor in people."

Age: 30

Birthplace: Coopers Plains, Australia

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2 285 VOTES

Billie Jean King is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Gay Icons in Sports
Photo: via Twitter
Tennis great Billie Jean King became the first prominent female professional athlete to come out as gay back in 1981. 

Age: 74

Birthplace: Long Beach, California, United States of America

Also Ranked

#13 on The Greatest Female Tennis Players of the Open Era

#65 on Female Celebrities You'd Want to Be Your BFF

#58 on The Best Female Athletes of All Time

#6 on The Greatest Womens Tennis Players of All Time

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3 303 VOTES

Ben Cohen is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Gay Icons in Sports
Photo: via Twitter

In 2013, Ben Cohen was inducted into the National Gay and Lesbian Sports Hall of Fame. He founded the The Ben Cohen StandUp Foundation, which works to stop bullying and homophobia.

Age: 39

Birthplace: Northampton, United Kingdom

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4 266 VOTES

Sheryl Swoopes is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Gay Icons in Sports
Photo: via Imgur
WNBA player Sheryl Swoopes announced that she was gay in 2005. She stated, "it doesn't change who I am. I can't help who I fall in love with. No one can."

Age: 47

Birthplace: Brownfield, Texas, United States of America

Also Ranked

#55 on The Best Female Athletes of All Time

#9 on The Top WNBA Players of All Time

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