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Brittney Griner lands deal with Mercury for 2023 season

Larry Brown Sports logo Larry Brown Sports 2/19/2023 Darryn Albert, Larry Brown Sports
Phoenix Mercury center Brittney Griner. © Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Phoenix Mercury center Brittney Griner.

Brittney Griner is officially returning to the WNBA following her release from Russia.

Josh Weinfuss and M.A. Voepel of ESPN reported on Saturday that Griner has agreed to a deal with the Phoenix Mercury. She is getting a one-year contract and will be playing for the Mercury during the 2023 season.

The 32-year-old Griner missed all of the 2022 WNBA season after being arrested at a Russian airport on drug smuggling charges in February 2022. 

She was sentenced to nine years in prison but was released in December as part of a prisoner swap in which the United States agreed to release convicted arms dealer Viktor Bout to Russia.

Griner was drafted by the Mercury in 2013, making eight All-Star teams with them and helping the team win the WNBA title in 2014. 

The Mercury had shown Griner support all throughout her detainment, and now she has formally reunited with them for the 2023 season, which begins on May 19.


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