Jason Collins scored three points in just eight minutes of play Thursday night in the Brooklyn Nets' blowout 112-89 win against the Nuggets in Denver. They were the first points of the season for Collins.

It was also an opportunity for Collins to meet the family of Matthew Shepard. Collins chose No. 98 in honor of the gay young man who was brutally murdered in 1998. The family drove to Denver to be there with Collins and to thank him for recognizing Shepard with the honor.

It should also be noted that the Nets are 2-1 since Collins joined the team. So much for the "distraction" of a "media circus."

The New York Post is reporting that the Nets are "all but certain" to keep Collins for the remainder of the season. That would be another big step in the right direction for gay athletes in the big pro sports. The Nets are currently in sixth place in the Eastern Conference, angling for a playoff spot and homecourt advantage in the first round.