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Britney Griner holds a basketball as she is efended by Azurá Stevens #30 of the Chicago Sky.

Source: Stacy Revere / Getty


In February, WNBA star Brittney Griner was detained at a Moscow airport after Russian authorities discovered vape cartridges in her luggage. Now, her wife Cherelle Griner is speaking out for the first time since the incident occurred.

Cherelle thanked fans for all their love and support for the Pheonix Mercury player as her struggle to return to U.S. soil weighs on.

“Thank you to everyone who has reached out to me regarding my wife’s safe return from Russia. Your prayers and support are greatly appreciated,” she wrote, captioning a sweet photo alongside Griner.

“I love my wife wholeheartedly, so this message comes during one of the weakest moments of my life. I understand that many of you have grown to love BG over the years and have concerns and want details. Please honor our privacy as we continue to work on getting my wife home safely,” Cherelle added.


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According to the Associated Press, the Russian Customs Service allegedly found cannabis oil in Griner’s vape, which could carry a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison. The customs service did not give an exact date as to when Griner was arrested. The star center’s agent Lindsay Kagawa Colas released a statement about the situation to AP news, telling the publication:

“We are aware of the situation with Brittney Griner in Russia and are in close contact with her, her legal representation in Russia, her family, her teams, and the WNBA and NBA. As this is an ongoing legal matter, we are not able to comment further on the specifics of her case but can confirm that as we work to get her home, her mental and physical health remain our primary concern.”

Griner has been playing for Russia’s women’s basketball team, the UMMC Ekaterinburg, for the last seven years.  She reportedly earns over $1 million per season. The league took a two week break in early February just before the FIBA World CUP pre-tournaments kicked off. Her last game was on Jan. 29. Griner is a two time U.S. Olympic gold medalist and she has won a WNBA championship with the Pheonix Mercury.

On Mar. 5, Russia’s State Department issued a do not travel advisory amid the ongoing war between Russia and Ukraine. The country urged for U.S. citizens to evacuate, warning Americans of the “potential for harassment” by Russian government security officials” and “the Embassy’s limited ability to assist” Americans in Russia.

The WBNA said they stood in full support of Griner amid her tough legal situation, adding that their “main priority” was her “swift and safe return to the United States.”
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