Sports

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.
Sarah Vaillancourt is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Gay Icons in Sports
Photo: Genevieve2/Wikimedia Commons/CC-BY-SA 3.0
Olympic hockey player Sarah Vaillancourt is openly gay. She has won two gold medals with the Canadian female ice hockey team.

Age: 33

Birthplace: Sherbrooke, Canada

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Sheryl Swoopes is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Gay Icons in Sports
Photo: TonyTheTiger/Wikimedia Commons/CC-BY-SA 4.0
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

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Gareth Thomas is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Gay Icons in Sports
Photo: via Reddit
Rugby player Gareth Thomas announced that he was gay in 2009. He has stated, "I don't know if my life is going to be easier because I'm out, but if it helps someone else... then it will have been worth it."

Age: 44

Birthplace: Sarn, Bridgend, United Kingdom

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Billie Jean King is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Gay Icons in Sports
Photo: Jonathan Exley/Wikimedia Commons/CC-BY-SA 3.0
Tennis great Billie Jean King became the first prominent female professional athlete to come out as gay back in 1981. 

Age: 75

Birthplace: Long Beach, California, United States of America

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