Elena Delle Donne said her relationship with former Illinois State basketball player Amanda Clifton will be discussed in an upcoming Vogue profile because “to leave her out wouldn’t have made any sense.”
Elena Delle Donne, the WNBA’s MVP and star of the Chicago Fire, revealed to reporters in Rio that she is gay.
Delle Donne discusses her public relevation and her engagement to longtime partner Amanda Clifton in an upcoming article in Vogue magazine. She was asked about that article on Wednesday in Rio, where the United States women’s basketball team is readying for Olympic competition.
“It was just one of those articles where they came into my home, spent a couple days with me, and Amanda is a huge part of my life,” she told reporters. “So to leave her out wouldn’t have made any sense. It’s not a coming out article or anything.”
Delle Donne, 26, added that while Vogue had plenty of access to Clifton, that won’t be a regular occurrence. She plans to keep her relationship private.
“As the future keeps moving on, I don’t plan on having our relationship out in the public and all this media on it,” she said, “but obviously there’s excitement right now because people see it for the first time.”
The pair have been engaged since June 2, according to Vogue, but they’ve been together far longer than that, Delle Donne said. And while her relationship and sexuality are now public, Delle Donne said none of this is a surprise to those close to her, such as her Fire teammates.
“They know Amanda,” Delle Donne said. “She’s always around. It’s nothing crazy.”
That’s especially true for the U.S. women’s basketball team. Delle Donne is the third member of the squad to publicly acknowledge a same-sex relationship, following star center Brittney Griner, who was married to WNBAer Glory Johnson last year (although she later filed for divorce) and veteran forward Seimone Augustus, who married actress LaTaya Varnier.