When WNBA star Brittney Griner was arrested in Russia over vape scandal, many hoop fans were shocked to see other women basketball players, not coming out in support of their companion. With the situation in and around Russia already being delicate because of the country’s invasion in Ukraine, Griner’s arrest was a damn serious scenario. Recently Lisa Leslie came out to make some shocking revelations upon the same.
Lisa Leslie went onto reveal that women basketball players were instructed to make a ‘fuss’ about Brittney Griner’s arrest in Russia. She emphasised how the WNBA star could have become a political pawn between the rivalry of two nations, during a conversation with Brandon Marshall, Chad Johnson and former WNBA player, Chantel Tremitiere on the latest episode of I AM ATHELETE.
What was opinionated by Lisa Leslie?
“So what we were told, and again, this is all sort of passed along through hearsay,” the 7x WNBA All-Star prefaced. “What we were told was to not make a big fuss about it so they could not use her as a pawn, so to speak, in this situation in the war. So to make it like it’s not that important, or don’t make it like ‘Free Brittney’ and we start this campaign and it becomes something they can use.
“That’s what we were told. And I don’t want to say who told us. I don’t want to say who said that, but it’s been kind of spreading through the women’s basketball world.”
To those who are still not aware, Brittney Griner was arrested in February at an airport near Moscow after Russian customs officials claimed they found vape cartridges in her carry-on luggage. Brittney, who could possibly/potentially face over a decade in prison has been held in custody since, with little information about her captivity known. With Leslie making such shocking revelations, it just goes onto show how bad the relationship of US and Russia been over the years.
She added, “It’s heartbreaking for all of us. We want to do more. And you think should we all use our social media platform and get behind it or not. This is the first time we’re in a situation and don’t know what to do.”
Lastly, the war in Ukraine complicates Griner’s case to higher extents. The west, led by America, has levied severe sanctions against Russia, dealing a big blow to the country’s economy. But with a marquee personnel still in deep water, the questions upon her safety have often concerned her family and friends.