The US basketball team retired Brittney Griner’s number 15 until the player is released by Russia

The US basketball team withdrew Brittney Griner’s number 15 until the player is released by the Russians (BRIAN SNYDER /)

The women’s basketball team USA retired this Wednesday the number 15, the number of Brittney Grineruntil the player of the phoenixmercurydetained in Russia since last February for drug possession, be released.

“No one on Team USA wears number 15 except two-time Olympic gold medalist Brittney Griner. USA Basketball will honor BG at the World Cup in Sydney and number 15 is reserved for when BG is back home,” the Mercury said in a statement.

The selection of USA is found in Australia to dispute the basketball world cup in sydney from this Thursday until next October 1.

Griner, world and Olympic champion with her country, was sentenced to nine years in prison on August 4 by a Russian court.

The American, 2.06 meters tall and who was a member of the Russian UMMC team in Yekaterinburg at the time of her arrest, pleaded guilty to introducing cannabis oil into Russian territory, although she argued that she did not do so with malicious intent.

The American, 2.06 meters tall and who was a member of the Russian UMMC team in Yekaterinburg at the time of her arrest, pleaded guilty to introducing cannabis oil into Russian territory, although she argued that she did not do so with malicious intent.
The American, 2.06 meters tall and who was a member of the Russian UMMC team in Yekaterinburg at the time of her arrest, pleaded guilty to introducing cannabis oil into Russian territory, although she argued that she did not do so with malicious intent. (EVGENIA NOVOZHENINA/)

His lawyers questioned as evidence the cannabis samples taken by the Russian police, after his arrest on February 17 at the airport of Moscowwhere he arrived on a flight from New York.

Joe Biden demanded that Russia releaseimmediately” to the 31-year-old athlete after calling the sentence “unacceptable”.

For his part, the United States Secretary of State, Anthony Blinkenhe proposed to his Russian colleague, Sergei Lavrovthe exchange of Griner and Paul Whelan, a former marine sentenced to 16 years for espionage, for the “merchant of death”, Victor But, who is serving a 25-year sentence in a US prison.

the war in Ukraine and the jailing of the WNBA star, Brittney Griner in Russia, they have shaken up geopolitics and virtually shut down the flow of American professional women who often play in Russian leagues to earn much more money than they do in the United States.

However, there are still Americans on the Russian courts: dozens of male players, including some with experience in the NBAThey are ignoring international conflicts and signing agreements there, and ensure that their careers and potential earnings are separate from politics.

The United States Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, proposed to his Russian colleague, Sergey Lavrov, the exchange of Griner and Paul Whelan, a former Marine sentenced to 16 years for espionage, for the
The United States Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, proposed to his Russian colleague, Sergey Lavrov, the exchange of Griner and Paul Whelan, a former Marine sentenced to 16 years for espionage, for the “merchant of death”, Victor But, serving a 25-year prison sentence in an American prison. (EVGENIA NOVOZHENINA/)

At least one American woman is also playing in Russia this season, at the same club Griner played for in that country.

“Russia was not my first choice,” he said. Joe Thomasson, 29, one of the Americans who plays in Russia. “He would not have been the first choice of any American, just because of the situation with Brittney Griner”.

Although several agents did not respond to requests to be interviewed about the players they manage in Russia, those that did identified nearly 30 American men’s basketball players who competed or planned to compete soon in the country.

Although several agents did not respond to requests to be interviewed about the players they manage in Russia, those that did identified nearly 30 American men's basketball players who competed or planned to compete soon in the country.
Although several agents did not respond to requests to be interviewed about the players they manage in Russia, those that did identified nearly 30 American men’s basketball players who competed or planned to compete soon in the country. (Susanna Saez/)

That figure represents about double the usual. Players can win over $1 million in Russia and often receive free housing and cars.

Many women’s basketball players who normally could have supplemented their modest WNBA salaries by playing in Russia during the inactive season are avoiding the country and signing contracts with teams in Turkey, Greece, Spain and other countries. The WNBA he claimed to be unaware that any of his players were going to go to Russia.

Alex Bentley, who last played in the WNBA in 2019, will play with UMMC Ekaterinburg for the second straight season.

(With information from EFE and The New York Times)

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Source-www.infobae.com