Chicago Sky star and reigning WNBA MVP Elena Delle Donne is ready to make her mark on the court for the U.S. in her first Olympics. Shes already added to the social conversation by discussing her sexuality for the first time publicly in a?Vogue?article that came out just a few days before the Rio Games opening ceremony.It was just one of those articles where they came into my home, spent a couple days with me, and [fiance] Amanda [Clifton] is a huge part of my life, Delle Donne said. So to leave her out wouldnt have made any sense. Its not a coming-out article or anything. Ive been with her for a very long time now, and people who are close to me know that, and thats that.The story -- which includes news of the couples June engagement -- is as important as it is meaningful. Education, awareness and efforts to create inclusive environments for LGBT athletes have all increased in recent years, but true equality is still a goal, not a reality.Former NBA player John Amaechi came out in 2007, a few years after he retired. He?became the first professional basketball player to openly identify himself?as gay, and his announcement was met with a mix of reactions, from celebration and acceptance to death threats and cries of, Why is this news??In the years since, reactions to athletes discussing their sexual orientation dont appear to have evolved. Amaechi said Monday on my Thats What She Said podcast that those who try?to shout down coverage of gay athletes do so to quiet the movement toward equality, not because they truly believe a high-profile player coming out is no longer newsworthy.Its not a naive response, Amaechi said. Its a calculated response. ... Its the kind of thing people say when they want you to shut up about it. But they dont want you to shut up about it because they actually believe equality has been met. They want you to shut up about it because they know it hasnt. And they dont want you to further this, because theyre uncomfortable about it.Amaechi and I also discussed the reaction to stories in which women speak openly about their sexuality versus stories in which men do the same. A greater acceptance of LGBT female athletes seems to be in no small part due to the fact that its easier to fulfill a stereotype than it is to shatter an expectation.I think misogyny is at the root of homophobia. Amaechi said. What men often hate, without saying the words -- they often lack the nuance to say it -- but what they hate about gay men is the idea that a gay man is a man whos trying to be more like a woman. Or is?more like a woman, by virtue of their sexuality ... who cedes their masculinity to be a gay person. And they resent that deeply.Its not easier [for women to come out], Amaechi said. Its just that stupid people find it more acceptable.Delle Donne is one of?a record number of out LGBT athletes competing in Rio, and already at the Games weve seen signs of progress and regression when it comes to acceptance.?USA Today Sports reported that the crowd inside Maracana Stadium cheered when two men were shown kissing on a kiss cam before the opening ceremony and that the trans community was well represented in the parade of athletes. But just the day before, members of the U.S. womens soccer team were subjected to homophobic slurs shouted by fans during their opening match with New Zealand.Groups such as You Can Play?continue to push for inclusivity and safe sporting environments, athletes like Delle Donne inspire people looking for role models and leagues establish punishments for homophobic slurs and actions. But homophobia remains deeply rooted in many locker rooms and across the sports landscape. Its crucial that the media continues to cover these issues and for LGBT athletes and their allies to keep having nuanced conversations and keep pushing educational efforts.If we didnt cover it, we would regress, Amaechi said. We would go back in time. People would not be exposed to gay people and say: Oh, you know, my hair hasnt gone on fire and my son hasnt turned gay. Nothing bad has happened.When we choose not to act, when we choose to ignore ignorance, it flourishes. When we choose not to refute hate, it burns. Zapatos Ecco España . -- Matt Kuchar and Harris English ran away with the Franklin Templeton Shootout, shooting a 14-under 58 on Sunday in the final-round scramble to break the tournament course record. Tienda De Zapatos Ecco .C. -- Kemba Walker and the Charlotte Bobcats got off to a fast start, and the Sacramento Kings were never quite able to catch up. http://www.eccobaratas.es/ . McPhee said that Ovechkins father Mikhail is in stable condition after having the surgery this week and is no longer in intensive care. "Weve told him to stay as long as necessary with your dad," he said. Ovechkin and his Russian national team were eliminated from the mens hockey tournament in Sochi on Wednesday with a 3-1 quarter-final loss to Finland. Ecco Baratas . LUCIE, Fla. Zapatos Ecco Baratos . He said Tuesday thats a big reason why he is now the new coach of the Tennessee Titans. Whisenhunt said he hit it off quickly with Ruston Webster when interviewing for the job Friday night. RIO DE JANEIRO -- Tony Parker confirmed after Frances lopsided defeat to Spain in Wednesdays Olympic quarterfinals that he has indeed played his final game for his national team.Parker said after Frances 92-67 loss to its longtime Spanish rivals that he has promised San Antonio Spurs coach Gregg Popovich and team president R.C. Buford he will halt his international career at age 34 -- because of the toll it has taken on him physically -- and focus on finishing his NBA career strongly.And Im not gonna change my mind about that, Parker said after scoring 14 points in his finale.Wednesdays exit was a rough one for the French after they had played so well Sunday in a narrow three-point defeat to the United States, which Parker skipped to rest a bruised toe he had suffered earlier in the tournament.France and Spain have met in top-level international competition for each of the past six summers. This comprehensive performance improved the Pau Gasol-led Spaniards record to 4-2 in those matchups and sent them into Fridays semifinals against the United States as the hottest team in Olympic mens basketball.I felt like Spain was the Spurs, Parker said of the oppositions high level on Wednesday, and I was on the other side.Reflecting on an emotional summer that, in addition to the end of his own international career, saw Tim Duncan announce his retirement from the Spurs, Parker said: The conversation with Timmy, it was weird when he told me he was not going to play. I knew that was going to come one day, with the Big Three without him, but its always tough when it finally happens.Ive been very blessed -- thats all I can say. Those 15 years, all the championships, all the records, everything that we accomplished, its just stuff when I retire I can cherish and show my kids everything that we won with the Spurs.Im just happy its not both at the same time, Parker continued, referring to Argentina star Manu Ginobilis decision to play on with the Spurs despite Duncans retirement.Im happy that Manu got one more year, so its not everybbody at the same time.dddddddddddd That day will come too, and then my day will come. Its just life. I think theres a lot of great guys -- it was a great 10 years with Kobe and Shaq and all the rivalries and stuff like that -- but everything comes to an end.France coach Vincent Collet called Parker the best French player forever and said it was very frustrating to walk off the court with Parker knowing he has a last game like that.We got four medals in the last five years with the national team, and he was a big part of it, Collet said. Hes been the leader that we needed for a long time.As Parker said, Spain was just great tonight, they made every spot. We made a decision to stop Pau, and?[Nikola] Mirotic?goes off. So ... thats basketball.At the same time, I dont want to throw away everything that weve done in the last 16 years [and] in the last eight, nine years with Coach Collet. Im very proud of what we did as a national team, and its the best results in the history of French basketball.The only consolation for Parker, on this night, is knowing that hell soon be able to call his good friend Gasol a teammate when they join forces for the first time next season after Gasols decision to sign in free agency with San Antonio. They embraced at midcourt after Spains emphatic win.Ive been playing against him since Im like 14 years old, Parker said. Great friend and off the court, we go to dinner, stuff like that, double dates and everything. I was so happy that he decided to come play with San Antonio. Hes going to be a great guy to have around.For me, it makes my job easy, with Pau and?LaMarcus [Aldridge], its going to be great and, like I said earlier, Spain?had a great generation. If it was not for Spain, I would have another 10 medals, 15 medals, but life is like that. I beat Pau a lot in the NBA, so it balances out.Saad Yousuf of ESPN Radio in Dallas (103.3 FM) contributed to this report. ' ' '