The arrest and trial of Brittney Griner, base of the Phoenix Mercury (WNBA), since February 17 of this year in Russia, deserved this Thursday an appeal to strengthen the demonstrations of solidarity and the efforts for her release to the USA sane and saves in the form of a scathing remark from one of basketball’s all-time greats: LeBron James.
‘King’ (‘King’) James, 37, four-time NBA champion (2012, 2013, 2016 and 2020), the first to pass 10,000 in the sum of points, assists and rebounds earned in the North American professional league of basketball, made clear the doubt as to why the two-time Olympic and world champion, in fact, wants to return to a USA that takes almost five months to get her release.
“Let’s be honest: do you think she’s feeling that America supports her? If it were me, I would probably be, after all this time, asking myself ‘does the US really want me back?'” All Star Games since 2003, in a ‘trailer’ of the next episode of their ‘talk show’, entitled The Shop: Uninterrupted, broadcast on the YouTube platform.
Detained at Moscow airport on February 17 for possession and trafficking of a prohibited substance (a cannabis-based oil, allegedly), Brittney Griner began her trial this month at the Khimki Court – the next hearing is Thursday, the 14th, and pleaded guilty to the charges, punishable by up to ten years in prison.
In May, the US Department of State and the White House considered the basketball player – whose wife, Cherelle, has been doubling down on public calls for her not to be forgotten – “mistakenly detained” and officially classified her as a “hostage”.
And in June, LeBron James, in a ‘tweet’, had shared the support for his compatriot, who took advantage of the break from the WNBA between seasons to play for a few months for the Russian 1st division team of UMMC Yekaterinburg. ‘King’ James has, by the way, marketed t-shirts with the inscription ‘We Are BG’ [Brittney Griner] up front, with the proceeds going to the BG Advocacy Fund, managed by the Griner family, to cover legal expenses incurred in efforts to bring Brittney back safely to the US.
The LeBron James ‘talk show’ episode should be broadcast on Friday, the 15th, but in the ‘trailer’ already released by ESPN, the basketball player recalls that “more than 110 days have passed since Griner was arrested” – what happened five weeks ago…
Phoenix Mercury coach Vanessa Nygaard has already thanked LeBron James for the solidarity shown, focusing on the Biden Administration’s slow response to resolve the case, and questioning double standards.
“If it was LeBron, I would already be home, right? This is also a declaration of the value of women. And the value of a black person. And the value of a lesbian person. Yes, that’s all. And we know: that’s why it hurts even more,” said Vaneesa Nygaard.
After Cherelle was present Sunday, the 10th, at the WNBA All Star Game, at Wintrust Arena, in Chicago – in which Brittney was honorably elected to the base five, and remembered on jerseys and in various ways –, Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, said, quoted on ABC, that Washington “will continue to make every effort to free Griner, as well as other Americans detained in Moscow, such as the former ‘marine’ [fuzileiro] Paul Whelan».
“We will not slow down while Brittney, Paul Whelan and all the Americans detained in error are reunited with their families”, was the ‘Tweet’ of the US equivalent of our Foreign Minister Anthony Blinken.
Former New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson and National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan have been in contact with the National Security Council (US security agency) and ABC News television said Bill Richardson will be the ‘spearhead’ of the negotiations by Griner, having, allegedly, already scheduled a trip to Moscow in this regard.