Jason Collins Talks Obama's Support, Gets Congratulations From Ellen DeGeneres

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Sports Illustrated / Getty Images
    Jason Collins

    Jason Collins is feeling the love!

    On Monday, the NBA center became the first active professional male athlete to come out as gay. Since then, the 34-year-old athlete says the support he's received--including from President Barack Obama and Ellen DeGeneres--has been "incredible."

    "You just try and live an honest, genuine life, and the next thing you know, you have the president calling you," Collins said Tuesday on "Good Morning America." "He was incredibly supportive and he was proud of me. He said this not only affected my life, but others going forward."

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    Also incredibly proud of Collins? Ellen DeGeneres! "You have no idea what a big deal that is!" she said on the episode of her talk show "Ellen," airing Tuesday. "I applaud you, Jason Collins! Good for you. That's a brave man. I would high-five you, but I don't think I could reach you, but when I see you, I'm gonna hug your knees so hard."

    "Really," she added. "You're an incredible role model."