On June 24, the National Football League (NFL) and Major League Baseball (MLB) will be participating in the New York City Pride March for the first time as leagues.
The NFL will have a float in the parade featuring a variety of LGBT+ members. Ryan O’Callaghan, who was an offensive tackle for the New England Patriots and Kansas City Chiefs, became one of a few former players who are openly gay. The float will have Wade Davis who works with the league on LGBT+ inclusion. Katie Sowers, the first publicly out coach in the NFL, will also be attending with Outsports.
Nearly 200 employees will be attending NYC Pride with MLB. MLB executive and former player Billy Bean and former MLB umpire Dale Scott, who are both openly gay, will be present. Deputy commissioner Dan Halem will be included on the league’s float. On June 23, employees will volunteer at the Pride Run and Youth Pride.
Other professional sporting organisations such as the National Hockey League (NHL), National Basketball Association (NBA), Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA), Major League Soccer and National Women’s Hockey League will have employees and players participating in the march.
The NFL, MLB, NHL, NBA and WNBA are all registered in the parade and will have floats, according to Outsports.
This will be the second time the NHL has participated in NYC Pride. They will also be included in Toronto Pride Parade and Montreal Pride Parade. Various teams will march locally.
— Boston Bruins (@NHLBruins) June 11, 2018
Both the NBA and WNBA have participated together since 2016. NBA commissioner, Adam Silver, and WNBA president, Lisa Borders, have attended numerous times. Jason Collins, former NBA player who is publicly out, will be featured this year. He was one of the first gay athletes to play in any of the four major North American professional sports leagues.
Feminist icon and out tennis legend Billie Jean King is one of four Grand Marshals of NYC Pride.
Professional sports teams have tried to be more inclusive to LGBT+ fans for pride month. Many have created rainbow logos or jerseys and have hosted a “Pride Night”.
The parade will take place on June 24 and will perhaps be the sportiest pride yet.
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