He’s only on a ten-day contract, but Jason Collins’s Brooklyn Nets jersey was the NBA’s top-selling jersey on Tuesday, its first day on the market. The league decided to start selling the merchandise after Collins became the first openly gay player in major American professional sports history on Sunday.
Even though Collins could potentially be without a team when his contract ends in less than a week, the NBA says it opted to start selling his jersey due to high demand. The Nets have the option to resign Collins to a second ten-day contract when his current one ends; at the end of his second contract, the team must decide whether to sign Collins for the remainder of the season.
Collins wore No. 46 in Sunday’s game against the Los Angeles Lakers, but will wear No. 98 starting on Wednesday night, a tribute to Matthew Shepard, a gay University of Wyoming student who was tortured and murdered in 1998. Shepard’s family will be in attendance when Collins and the Nets play in Denver against the Nuggets on Thursday.