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Nashville Predators Hockey Prospect Luke Prokop Comes Out As Gay; Is The First NHL Player To Come Out Publicly

Nashville Predators Hockey Prospect Luke Prokop Comes Out As Gay; Is The First NHL Player To Come Out Publicly

Luke Prokop has come out as gay.

The 19-year-old hockey player, who is a prospect for the Nashville Predators team, revealed the news in an Instagram post on Monday (July 19).

“It has been quite the journey to get to this point in my life, but I could not be happier with my decision to come out,” Luke wrote.

Click inside to read Luke Prokop’s full statement…

He went on in his heartfelt message, saying that “from a young age I have dreamed of being an NHL player, and I believe that living my authentic life will allow me to bring my whole self to the rink and improve my chances of fulfilling my dreams.”

“I hope that in sharing who I am I can help other people see that gay people are welcome in the hockey community, as we work to make sure that hockey is truly for everyone,” Luke added. “I may be new to the community, but I am eager to learn about the strong and resilient people who came before me and paved the way so I could be more comfortable today.”

While speaking to ESPN, Luke shared that he started to come out to friends, family and his team last month.

“I was lying in bed one night, had just deleted a dating app for the fourth or fifth time, and I was extremely frustrated because I couldn’t be my true authentic self,” he shared. “In that moment I said, ‘Enough is enough. I’m accepting who I am. I want to live the way I want to, and I want to accept myself as a gay man.’”

Luke was selected in the third round by the Predators in the 2020 NHL draft and signed a three-year entry-level contract with the Predators in December. He played last season for the Calgary Hitmen of the Western Hockey League, where he was an alternate captain.

The Nashville Predators team and coaches, as well as NHL, have supported Luke in his coming out.

“The Nashville Predators organization is proud of Luke for the courage he is displaying in coming out today and we will support him unequivocally in the days, weeks, and years to come as he continues to develop as a prospect,” Predators president and CEO Sean Henry said. “A long-stated goal in our organization is equality for all, including the LGBTQ community, and it is important that Luke feels comfortable and part of an inclusive environment as he moves forward in his career.”

Roman Josi, captain of the Predators, added, “Our message as a team [is that] we’re obviously very supportive of him. We just reached out and told him [we'll help with] whatever he needs and that we’re proud of him. It’s a big step for him, and we fully support him.”

Just last month, football player Carl Nassib made history in coming out as the first active NFL player. Luke is doing the same for the NHL.

Scroll below to see the statement from the NHL…

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Photos: Getty
Posted to: Luke Prokop, Sports

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