LeBron James had to clarify his comments about WNBA player Brittney Griner, whose in Russian jail. In a preview of an upcoming episode of The Shop, the NBA All-Star was curious as to why Griner would want to come back to the United States. She’s been behind bars for five months.
“She’s been there over 110 days. Now, how could she feel like America has her back?,” he questioned. “I would be feeling like, ‘Do I even want to go back to America?'”
LeBron James later went to Twitter to add more context to his comments since the clip of the preview didn’t.
“My comments on The Shop regarding Brittney Griner wasn’t knocking our beautiful country,” he tweeted. “I was simply saying how she’s probably feeling emotionally along with so many other emotions, thoughts, etc inside that cage she’s been in for over 100+ days! Long story short #BringHerHome.”
Griner recently pled guilty to large-scale transportation of drugs charges and is facing 10 years in Russian prison. The Phoenix Mercury player was arrested on Feb 17, 2022 after vape cartridges containing hashish oil was found in her luggage at Moscow’s Sheremetyevo airport.
On July 4, president Joe Biden received a letter from Griner where she talked about how difficult is in to be away from her family. In May, her wife Cherelle graduated from North Carolina Central University School of Law with her Juris Doctor degree. A milestone that Griner had to miss due to being detained.
As I sit here in a Russian prison, alone with my thoughts and without the protection of my wife, family, friends, Olympic jersey, or any accomplishments, I’m terrified I might be here forever. On the 4th of July, our family normally honors the service of those who fought for our freedom, including my father who is a Vietnam War Veteran. It hurts thinking about how I usually celebrate this day because freedom means something completely different to me this year.
After he received the letter, Biden and vice president Kamala Harris reached out to Cherelle Griner. Biden “called Cherelle to reassure her that he is working to secure Brittney’s release as soon as possible,” read a statement from the White House.
James’ The Shop episode will premiere July 15.
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