Basketball | Eliot Spitzer | News | Rick Welts | Sports

Watch: Phoenix Suns President Rick Welts Talks About Coming Out


Phoenix Suns President talks to Eliot Spitzer about the support he has received since coming out publicly in the New York Times over the weekend.

Spitzer asks Welts if he can name other gay men in the sports world.

"No. Because in the four years that I have been in sports, no one has ever asked me, and I have never asked anyone."

Watch their interview, AFTER THE JUMP...

Feed This post's comment feed


  1. The quote is "forty" years that he's been in sports, not "four."

    Posted by: Chris | May 19, 2011 9:03:35 AM

  2. I find it difficult to relate to the very wealthy owner of a professional sports franchise. Just as much as it's difficult to relate to multimillionaire jocks. Much of what he says is also disingenuous imho. But, he certainly doesn't owe me or the gay 'community' anything. It's his life.

    Posted by: ratbastard | May 19, 2011 9:22:43 AM

  3. UM. How does Magic Johnson having HIV equate with him coming out or needing to? Did he say he was HIV positive? Is this guy for real? What an asinine question.
    Also, he wanted him to publicly out people?

    Posted by: jim morrissey | May 19, 2011 9:25:36 AM

  4. Also, what a pathetic joke Spitzer [and CNN for hiring him] is. This a**wipe while as part of his former job rigorously prosecuted prostitution and so-called 'Johns', all the while using prostitutes himself. Then he used his wife and family as a shield of respectability when he got caught. He's nothing more than a vain, arrogant spoiled brat who's led a very privileged life.

    Posted by: ratbastard | May 19, 2011 9:27:38 AM

  5. He's not the owner of Phoenix Suns, or at least, not the majority owner.

    Posted by: Land This | May 19, 2011 9:36:43 AM

  6. As for the world of jocks, either HS, college, 'amateur', pro, etc., homophobia/anti-gay attitudes are real, widespread, and widely tolerated. Being a 'jock' has of course been used for eons as a barometer of whether someone is a 'f*g'. Even though there are plenty of jocks who're are bi/gay, almost all are on the DL. I played sports in school and now, and enjoy watching, etc., But it's always bothered me how jocks at almost all levels are treated often inordinately better than others, and how they are worshiped by many. And it really bothers me how many gay and bi men emulate str8s in likewise worshiping them, even though they really do represent institutions that historically and even now are at the forefront of mocking and ridiculing gay men, regardless of what appears to be a fairly decently orchestrated PR campaign going on. I think some gay men suffer from Stockholm Syndrome in this regard.

    Posted by: ratbastard | May 19, 2011 9:42:54 AM

  7. Yeah, you're right. I meant to say president. Aside from that, I still stand by what I posted though.

    Posted by: ratbastard | May 19, 2011 9:44:33 AM

  8. I don't get this mantra of "he doesn't owe me anything". That's got nothing to do with anything. He's decided to make his life public, or, in other words, to make it our business. We didn't ask him to, but, now that he has, We're going to have an opinion about it. All the dominating of a thread and all the scare quotes in the world won't change that fact.

    It's also wrong, because he owes the LGBT community everything for all that all the people who have been out for the last CENTURY have given him. He wouldn't finally be living his life for the first time when he's never had anything to lose if it weren't for all the men and women who sacrificed everything they had to make it possible. It's disgraceful that he's only started paying that back and it's disgraceful for anyone to erase the sacrifices of their betters by saying he doesn't owe them anything.

    He's a coward and an idiot. He's a rich white man who denied his own dead partner when he was supported by his employers, his family and his friends. He could have been using his influence for decades to make things better, but he chose to cower for no reason at all instead, even while his own partner died. He's a failure as a human being.

    That's the only story to be told here.

    Posted by: ohplease | May 19, 2011 10:14:47 AM


    You know what...I hadn't looked at it that way. Thank you.

    You are correct, the older people of the GLBT movement are owed "something" because they were out, pushing for equality and taking their lumps so that teenagers today can make mockery of them and the movement.

    He owes them something.

    Posted by: Rin | May 19, 2011 10:32:48 AM

  10. He's cute! Is he single?

    Posted by: Chris in Irvine | May 19, 2011 10:39:39 AM

  11. "But it's always bothered me how jocks at almost all levels are treated often inordinately better than others, and how they are worshiped by many"

    That's nothing compared to how people in the military have their asses kissed. At least athletes aren't usually out there slaughtering people so we can have cheap oil.

    What OHPLEASE @ 10:14 said. Everyone around him knew he was gay apparently --he didn't date women or getting straight-married it seems-- but he let the charade go on for *decades*.

    Posted by: Henry Holland | May 19, 2011 10:54:06 AM

  12. Well, OhPlease, I don't agree with everything you're saying but you've got some good points. This man is getting a lot of praise because he's a public figure, but there are plenty of people who've taken much braver stands who are never talked about.

    I will say that I don't think he's asking for praise in particular, and I don't think he's portraying himself as a martyr. To his credit he refers primarily to his own personal weakness.

    Also: the pioneers of gay and lesbian rights struck out for their own liberation, and the principle of liberation for all. While they wanted to make a better world, I don't think they'd demand that a retroactive debt be paid by an individual who didn't ask them to take the brave steps that they did. He owes it to his own integrity to honor them. If he chooses not to, well, the law often allows what honor forbids.

    Posted by: Yeek | May 19, 2011 11:00:49 AM

  13. Why is it such a big deal (to straights) and surprise there are gay sportmen?

    Posted by: Matt26 | May 19, 2011 11:07:29 AM


    The military, police, jails, prisons, are very much necessary 'evils' [at least SOME aspects of these institutions and organizations could be classified as evil.] Our world is not a peaceful utopia, and there are plenty of bad people [including mentally ill] who would gladly hurt others, including innocent people, etc. This extends to politics on the world stage and interactions and relationships between nation states, even to some extent races and ethnicities.

    Professional sports, spoiled athletes, ARE NOT necessary.

    Posted by: ratbastard | May 19, 2011 11:11:20 AM

  15. If someone say, for the sake of argument, Henry Holland, were in a situation where he was about to be turned into a lampshade in a concentration camp, I believe he'd be pleased if some 'murderers' i.e. soldiers, came to his rescue. Likewise, if he was being seriously assaulted, I think he'd be pleased if a 'pig', i.e. cop, showed up and stopped the assault. I assume he'd be pleased if his assaulter were tried, convicted and sent to prison also.

    Posted by: ratbastard | May 19, 2011 11:17:50 AM

  16. Leave it to ratbastard and ohplease to bring the negativity, and suck any semblance of joy and celebration out of this incredible milestone. Good going bitter queens!!

    Posted by: Ty | May 19, 2011 11:50:41 AM

  17. Part of me thinks he's a coward for not coming out sooner.

    But on the other hand, I gotta hand it to him for not using his coming out as a means to flog a book or sign up for the Howard Bragman big gay sob story PR campaign. He really is doing it because he feels remorse and thinks it's the right thing to do.

    Posted by: nodnarb | May 19, 2011 12:08:32 PM

  18. Yes it's frustrating he didn't come out sooner, but this is a good thing. What a week! Three high profile coming out stories...this can only help us even if we tend to think they came (out) late to the party!

    Posted by: Geoff | May 19, 2011 12:23:53 PM

  19. @TY,

    I'm not 'old', and I'm not a 'queen'. You're lucky you're behind a computer screen and not standing in front of me,boss.

    Posted by: ratbastard | May 19, 2011 12:40:17 PM

  20. Loved the quote at the end on marriage equality. "I'm still looking for the asterick."

    I don't care that he came out this late in life or this priviledged. Its another high profile move that only helps us all in the long run.

    Posted by: Roger | May 19, 2011 12:57:35 PM

  21. OHPLEASE and RATBASTARD are right on. The truth is usually damning!

    Posted by: nikko | May 19, 2011 1:49:17 PM

  22. whether it's for a book, or for "remorse" (what?), i am glad they come out.

    so long as our society treats us like we're not full citizens, every gay person coming out is a hero in my book. the consequences of coming out were definitely dire in the past; and we are forever grateful to those who gave the ultimate sacrifice for us today. that is the case for every single civil rights issue. we stand on the shoulders of giants.

    but people forget that for each individual, coming out is very much akin to reinventing the wheel. so for some people to be standing behind their computers talking about money , race, etc. as reasons these people should have come out earlier is pretty ridiculous, and misses the point, really.

    Posted by: daftpunkydavid | May 19, 2011 2:28:19 PM

  23. I get that he was in the closet AT WORK to save his career and that his career was the most important thing in his life. But that's not the same as HAVING to be in the closet, especially since many -- if not most -- of his colleagues and peers where aware he was gay.

    When you're out to your mom and to your sister and you live with your partner for 14 years, openly, it's a little weird to call that "in the closet".

    On the other hand, who knows what goes on in other people's heads...

    Posted by: BobN | May 19, 2011 2:31:50 PM

  24. I'd also be more impressed if all these sports teams would, after calling to support him, institute non-discrimination policies in their organizations...

    Posted by: BobN | May 19, 2011 2:34:36 PM

  25. If you do not know what remorse means, there are plenty of online dictionaries that will help you out.

    Posted by: nodnarb | May 19, 2011 2:35:20 PM

  26. 1 2 »

Post a comment


« «Watch: Ted Nugent Repulsed by 'Unnatural Man-on-Man Sex' But Has No Problem with Gays« «