Olympian and WNBA Star Elena Delle Donne Comes Out

WNBA star and one of the athletes who will represent the U.S. in the Rio 2016 Summer Olympics, Eleca Delle Donne, recently announced that she is in a same-sex relationship.

Elena Delle Donne is a star on the WNBA’s Chicago Sky and a member of the U.S. women’s Olympic basketball team, which will represent our country in the Rio Olypic Games. She’s also with a lady, and proud of it!


Delle Donne recently came out in a Vogue magazine profile as being in a relationship with a woman. 


The article is not posted online, but OutSports reported that part of it states, “Elena divides her time between traveling with her team, the Chicago Sky, and her family’s home in the rolling green landscape of Wilmington, Delaware. She and her fiancee, Amanda Clifton, keep apartments in both Chicago and Wilmington.”


In the past, Delle Donne, 26, has been vocal in her support of openly lesbian players in women’s basketball, such as Brittney Grinder, but has never discussed her own sexual orientation until now. In the Vogue piece, Delle Donne does not explicitly identify as a lesbian, but makes it clear that she and her partner, Clifton, are very much together and not afraid to let the world know.


Chicago Tribune reporter Chris Hine talked to Delle Donne in Rio about her engagement, about which she said, “I decided I’m not at all going to hide anything. The biggest thing is respecting Amanda’s privacy as well. She’s not on the stage, she doesn’t need to be interviewed and I don’t want her to have to feel that way. … It’s not a coming out article or anything. I’ve been with her for a very long time now and people who are close to me know that and that’s that.”


Any way you spin it, however, Delle Donne’s openness about her relationship with Clifton is an inspiration in a world where athletes still need to worry about whether who they love will affect their careers. Way to go, Elena and Brittney, and congrats on your pending nuptials!


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