Isaac Humphries will play for a familiar team next season. The pro basketball player in Australia who publicly came out as gay last year recently signed with the Adelaide 36ers of the National Basketball League.
Humphries, who played his college ball under John Calipari at the University of Kentucky, was a member of the 36ers from 2020-22.
Last season, he played for the Melbourne United, and led the league in blocked shots.
Humphries, 25, is one of the best players in the NBL — Australia’s top pro league. He was named Rookie of the Year in 2018 before having a brief stint with the Atlanta Hawks.
When he came out to his teammates last season, he received nothing but support.
In an op-ed for CNN, Humphries said he made the decision to come out after spending time in Los Angeles, where he saw out gay men thriving in all walks of life.
“In LA, it was completely different,” he wrote. “I was around some of the most successful people in the world – everyone from musicians, television and film producers, media personalities, A-list celebrities – and got to see that being openly gay can come with joy.”
Now, Humphries is living that life for himself. He excelled in his first game post-coming out, and the success has kept coming.
While it was great to see Humphries thrive last season, the fact that he signed with another team this offseason is perhaps even more significant. For years, we heard about how teams in male pro sports would possibly shy away from acquiring out players.
But we can now say that theory was just fear-mongering. There are scores of examples of gay players signing with other teams after coming out, and Humphries is just the latest example.
The 2023-24 NBL season starts in the fall. We can’t wait to see what Humphries accomplishes next.