by DJ Byrnes
Griner officially has not declared her intention to return to the women’s basketball team after her harrowing saga in Russian captivity, but the option is there if she wants.
The women’s team will be holding a minicamp ahead of the Paris Games, and Griner is available for selection.
“In case anyone is wondering: Brittney Griner, a two-time Olympic gold medalist with Team USA, can certainly be part of the pool heading into the Paris Games should she choose as she gets re-acclimated to basketball following her detainment,” Alexa Philippou tweeted.
Griner spent nine months in Russian custody for attempting to bring a small amount of marijuana hashish aboard a domestic flight with her Russian Premier League team. The Russians originally sentenced her to nine years in a maximum-security penal colony for women before President Joe Biden agreed to a prisoner swap that also featured convicted Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout.
Biden, who previously promised to free Griner after his party’s surprising performance in the 2022 midterm election, faced virulent online criticism for the decision to swap a basketball player for an arms dealer.
The sports world, however, was quick to react to the news of Griner potentially returning to national basketball.
I’m surprised she would trust going to another Country at this point…
— Nichole Dick❌ (@NicholeDick1) February 6, 2023
Only time will tell if she makes her official return.