New York Knicks forward Reggie Bullock was the star of the team’s recent Pride Night festivities, despite sitting out due to injury. When the veteran wingman emerged from the locker room last Thursday, he was wearing Rainbow sneakers with Rainbow-dyed streaks in his hair.
The gestures, like many of Bullock’s actions in recent years, were meant to show solidarity with the LGBTQ community. Bullock has been a staunch advocate for LGBTQ people since the 2014 murder of his transgender sister, Mia Henderson. Last October, Bullock lost another sister, Keiosha Moore, who was fatally stabbed in Baltimore.
“Obviously something tragic happened to me,” Bullock told reporters, via Gay City News. “I stand up for the whole LGBTQ community. I want to continue using my platform to stand up for all those all over the world who are fighting for equality on a daily basis. That’s what I’m about and that’s what my sister believed in.”
In the immediate aftermath of Mia’s death, Bullock still referred to her with male pronouns, and had her birth name tattooed on her arm. In an interview last year on the YouTube series, “Kikis with Louie,” Bullock said it took him some time to become educated on trans issues. Eventually, he got his sister’s street name, “Mia Henderson,” tattooed on his leg.
Since then, Bullock has become an outspoken LGBTQ activist, becoming the first active NBA player to participate in New York City’s Pride March and immersing himself with organizations like GLAAD. Two years ago, Bullock also got the acronym “LGBTQ” tattooed on his calf.
Even though Bullock was unable to play during the Knicks’ Pride Night — he missed the first 33 games of the season following offseason surgery — he was a focal point of the evening. The nine-year NBA veteran wore a rainbow t-shirt that he designed with students at the Hetrick-Martin Institute, which is an NYC-based LGBTQ youth center that reaches thousands of kids each year across 38 states.
“The kids designed the actual letters, and I told them my sister’s story,” Bullock told Gay City News. “I heard different stories of different kids and some kids who hadn’t come out yet and don’t know how to tell their parents. All in all, it was a great time. There is nothing better than to talk and interact with those kids.”
On pride night Reggie Bullock explains how he honors his late sister pic.twitter.com/dSIJ85jxJu— ClutchPoints NBA (@ClutchPointsNBA) January 17, 2020
The Knicks organization did its part as well, displaying the words “Pride Night” on the Madison Square Garden jumbotron and perching rainbows on all video boards. Some of Bullock’s teammates wore the rainbow t-shirts as well, an act that Bullock says would’ve been unfathomable just a few years ago.
With just 10 games under his belt this season, there’s room for Bullock to make more of an impact on the court for the Knicks. But so far, he’s already had an immense impact on the team’s culture, continuing to push his noble message of inclusion.