By Spike Eskin
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – It’s not exactly sports, it’s “sports entertainment,” but it’s still an awfully big deal.
WWE wrestler Darren Young, one half of the tag-team the Prime Time Players, told TMZ that he is gay.
“I’m a WWE superstar and to be honest with you, I’ll tell you right now, I’m gay. And I’m happy, very happy,” Young said when asked what he would think of a WWE superstar being homosexual.
Vince McMahon, the longtime head of the WWE said on Twitter, “Congratulations to @DarrenYoungWWE for being the first openly gay WWE Superstar!”
NBA player Jason Collins came out earlier this year and became the first openly gay athlete in the four major sports in the US while he was still active. A difference here is that while Collins is toward the end of his career, Young is hopefully just entering the prime of his.
To be honest, I don’t think it matters. Does it matter? Does it matter to you? Does it change what you think about me? I guess if you want to call it coming out … I really don’t know what to say it is but I’m just letting you know. I’m happy with who I am, I’m comfortable with myself, and I’m happy to be living the dream. I’m in L.A. for SummerSlam with WWE,” he said.
SummerSlam, one of the WWE’s biggest events, is Sunday night.
“You know, to be honest with you, I’m happy with myself. Some people might not like it, some people will like it, but I’m here to please myself. I’m here to be happy. It’s very important I’m happy with myself.
“I’m hoping to be able to make a difference. It’s very important to me that people understand that someone’s sexual preference shouldn’t really matter. It should be about the person.”
Young, like most in the WWE, plays a role. That role is defined, in Young’s own Twitter biography as “money, women and wrestling.”
“We’re all adults. When I come to work, I come to work. Business is business. I’m a WWE superstar and I’m there to entertain the WWE universe, and that’s what my job is to do … and I do it well,” Young said.
Thanks to Larry Brown sports for the heads up.