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Suns' Ryan Resch Becomes NBA's 1st Publicly Out Basketball Operations Exec

Mike Chiari@@mikechiariFeatured Columnist IVJune 25, 2022

Michael Gonzales/NBAE via Getty Images

Phoenix Suns vice president of basketball strategy and evaluation Ryan Resch announced Saturday that he is gay.

According to ESPN's Kevin Arnovitz, Resch is the first publicly out person to work in basketball operations in an NBA front office.

Resch is hopeful others will follow in his footsteps, saying, "Ultimately my goal is to normalize for people in and out of the league the existence of gay men and women on the basketball side."

The 29-year-old Resch has quickly risen through the ranks since joining the organization as an intern in 2016 following a stint as a graduate assistant at his alma mater, Baylor University.

He works closely with general manager James Jones, running meetings with the GM.

And Jones was the first Suns employee Resch told he is gay, doing so after a practice this past season.

Resch called it "amongst the most nondescript conversations we've ever had" and added that there was "beauty in how uneventful it was" since it made him comfortable to come out to the organization by simply living as himself.

Resch explained that he came to the realization that he wanted to come out during the 2021 NBA Finals, when the Suns were facing the Milwaukee Bucks.

Though the Suns fell short, they held a 2-0 series lead, and Resch said he felt winning a championship wouldn't have made him entirely happy: "I won't necessarily feel fulfilled in my life. I'll be happy and I'll be excited that we've done what we set out to do, but I won't feel fulfilled [without coming out]."

The Suns figure to be in the mix as a championship contender again next season after making the Western Conference Semifinals in 2022.

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