Bravo television executive Andy Cohen shot down rumors that he’s engaged to former NHL star Sean Avery, insisting that the well-known athlete is “very, very straight.”
Cohen, who is openly gay, was approached this week by a TMZ cameraman, who offered him “congratulations” on his rumored engagement to Avery. The comment drew a smile from Cohen, but the 44-year-old Bravo exec explained that his relationship with Avery was nothing more than a friendship.
“Dude, Sean Avery is straight. Do you understand that?” Cohen told TMZ. “A gay guy and a straight guy should be able to be friends without you asking me if we’re engaged. Listen, I’d be happy if Sean and I were, but it’s not [happening].”
Rumors of the alleged gay relationship began earlier this month, when gossip blog The Fame Driven published photos of Cohen and Avery on vacation together in the Hamptons. According to an unnamed source, Avery and the openly gay Cohen had been secretly dating for more than a year, and were even engaged.
“I’m not sure if you are aware or not, but Andy Cohen has been dating former NHL Sean Avery for almost a year and a half now, it will be two years in March. And get this, they are secretly ENGAGED!” the unnamed source told The Fame Driven. “There have been rumors for years in the NHL league about Sean Avery’s sexuality, but he has always vehemently denied it.”
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The Fame Driven’s source added that Avery’s well-documented relationships with actress Elisha Cuthbert and model Hilary Rhoda were simply attempts to avoid “backlash” from his NHL teammates. In addition, the source claims that Avery has resisted Cohen’s attempts to make their alleged relationship public.
“Andy is sprung over Sean, but the issue is that Sean Avery is not yet comfortable making their relationship public. Even though Sean is retired from the NHL, he still doesn’t want the ‘gay’ title attached to him, especially after so many years he’s denied he was homosexual,” The Fame Driven’s source claims. “Sean is openly gay/bisexual around close friends, but not to the public.”
In addition to the comments Cohen made to the TMZ cameraman, both the Bravo host and Avery took to social media to address rumors regarding their alleged gay relationship. When asked by a Twitter follower if the Avery rumors were true, Cohen responded by telling the fan to “ask [Sean Avery].”
Meanwhile, Avery addressed the rumors by posting a screencap of The Fame Driven’s photos to Instagram, accompanied by the caption “#Busted.” The post was eventually deleted.