Halfway through the NBA season and Jason Collins remains on the sideline with a job. However the ex-Wizard, who announced he was gay last April, is coming back to town -- as a guest of first lady Michelle Obama at Tuesday night's State of the Union address.
Collins, 35, and two survivors of the Boston Marathon bombing will be among those sitting with the first lady as President Barack Obama delivers the annual address to the nation.
"It's a big deal that the administration has extended its hand to not only me, but my family, and also sports fans and also the gay community," Collins said during an interview with ESPN on Tuesday morning. "I cover a lot of different topics."
The 12-year NBA journeyman joined the Wizards midway through the 2012-13 season in a trade with the Boston Celtics. The 7-foot center, best known on the court for his leadership, defense and penchant for picking up fouls, played just six games in Washington. Collins remains hopeful those were not the final games of his career.
"I try to control what I can control and that's how hard I train right now," he told ESPN. "I know that I'm in great shape and that if I get an opportunity ... if an owner, coach, GM calls my agent ... I'll be ready to play."
Asked by ESPN if being gay has harmed his ability to get a call, Collins replied said: "I have no idea. For me, again, it goes back to what I can control, and that's my training."
UPDATED: Collins tweeted out this picture as he was getting ready for the address.