Since being detained in Russia, WNBA player Brittney Griner hasn’t played in any games this season.
According to the WNBA, Griner was selected as an All-Star and starter for this season’s WNBA All-Star Game. Commissioner Cathy Engelbert announced that Phoenix Mercury center Griner, who was previously selected to the seven previous AT&T WNBA All-Star Games, will be an honorary All-Star and starter.
“During each season of Brittney’s career in which there has been an All-Star Game, she has been selected as an All-Star,” said Engelbert in a written statement.
“It is not difficult to imagine that if BG were here with us this season, she would once again be selected and would, no doubt, show off her incredible talents. So, it is only fitting that she be named as an honorary starter today, and we continue to work on her safe return to the U.S.”
The 2022 AT&T WNBA All-Star Game will be played at Wintrust Arena in Chicago, home of the defending WNBA Champions, the Chicago Sky, on Sunday, July 10.
Earlier this year, in March, it was reported that police detained Griner in Moscow after officials found vape cartridges that allegedly contained cannabis oil in her luggage while at the airport. According to officials, the basketball star is facing drug smuggling charges with a possibility of 10 years in prison for having the cannabis oil pen.
Last week, her detention in Russia was extended again since being imprisoned. According to the Russian state news agency TASS, this time, her extension is until July 2. This is the third extension of Griner’s imprisonmentGriner’srst extension occurred in March when they extended her stay to May 19. Six days before that extension was expected to expire, it was extended until June 18. Once again, it was extended to the beginning of next month.
Last month, the State Department reclassified her as wrongfully detained and thereby transferred oversight of her case to the State Department Presidential Envoy for Hostage Affairs (SPEHA).