Search
Close this search box.

Brittney Griner Makes Triumphant Return in Her First WNBA All-Star Game Since Russian Detention | WATCH

She dunks twice early at All-Star Game
Brittney Griner (Lucas Peltier-USA Today Network-Reuters)
Brittney Griner (Lucas Peltier-USA Today Network-Reuters)

*(CNN) — Phoenix Mercury superstar Brittney Griner marked a successful return to the WNBA All-Star Game on Saturday, her first since being released from a Russian penal colony last December.

The nine-time WNBA All-Star Griner finished with 18 points, including scoring her team’s first six points and dunking twice, in Team Stewart’s 143-127 avenging victory over Team Wilson at the 2023 All-Star Game in Las Vegas.

“It meant everything to me,” Griner said in front of a sell-out crowd after the game. “I didn’t think that I would be here today, honestly but everybody sending letters, sending love, posting. I’m still seeing it to this day everything that everybody did. It really meant a lot to me, it gave me hope it made me not want to just give it up for anything, so it was this league that helped me out.”

Griner’s arrest last year in Russia sparked diplomatic drama between the US and the Kremlin that played out alongside Russia’s war in Ukraine. Griner was sentenced to nine years in prison in early August and was moved to a penal colony before being released in a prisoner swap in December.

“I just love being here, I love competing, I love just doing everything for the fans. They do everything for us. We wouldn’t be here without them,” Griner said. “I’m just honored to be on this court.”

Team Stewart was captained by New York Liberty’s Breanna Stewart, who finished with nine points and nine assists, while Team Wilson was led by reigning league MVP A’ja Wilson of the Las Vegas Aces. Wilson finished with 20 points in the loss.

Wilson’s team defeated the Stewart-captained team at last year’s All-Star Game in Chicago.

The WNBA’s leading scorer this season, Jewell Loyd of the Seattle Storm, earned MVP honors after scoring an All-Star Game record 31 points and 10 three pointers for Team Stewart, while adding four rebounds and six assists in the victory.

The “Gold Mamba’s” 31 points broke the prior record of 30 points held by Maya Moore and last year’s All-Star Game MVP, Kelsey Plum.

“Threes are more than twos, I think I told Sabrina [Ionescu] that I’m going to put a lot of threes up,” Loyd said after the game on breaking the record. “It’s a special moment honestly, it’s beautiful for the league and I’m happy I was able to do it for my family.”

WNBA commissioner Cathy Engelbert announced on Saturday that Phoenix will be the host city for the 2024 WNBA All-Star Game.

RELATED NEWS ON EURWEB: Brittney Griner Harassed by Conservative Social Media ‘Provocateur’ At Dallas Airport | WATCH

The-CNN-Wire
™ & © 2023 Cable News Network, Inc., a Warner Bros. Discovery Company. All rights reserved.

We Publish News 24/7. Don’t Miss A Story. Click HERE to SUBSCRIBE to Our Newsletter Now!

Terrell Davis - Getty
Kamala Harris (Phoenix Awards) - GettyImages
Prince and Angela Floyd - screenshot
Joe Biden & Kamala Harris - screenshot
Joe Biden - screenshot
Alexis Smith (Miss Kansas) - screenshot
FUBU cap
Amber Rose at 2024 GOP convention - screenshot
Brittney & Cherelle Griner - Instagram
Wendy Williams
Thomas Matthew Crooks
Read More
Donald Trump shooting - bloody ear (screenshot)
Read More
Tejuana Johnson - via Facebook
Read More
Kobe and Joe Jellybean Bryant - screenshot
Read More
Donald Trump in Butler PA as shots are heard - screengrab
Read More
Donald Trump being rushed from stage in Butler PA
Read More
Sandra 'Pepa' Denton - Getty
Read More
Joy Reid - Amber Rose (MSNBC-Getty)
Read More
Amanda Seales (Getty)
Read More
Robin Allen as Miss Cleo - via Lifetime
Read More

POPULAR

Terrell Davis - Getty
United Airlines Apologizes to Terrell Davis After Wrongful Arrest and Harassment
Kamala Harris (Phoenix Awards) - GettyImages
Kamala Harris will Seek Democratic Nomination - She Could be the First Black Woman to Lead A Major Party Ticket | WATCH
Prince and Angela Floyd - screenshot
The Floyd Estate (in PG County, MD): Dream Home or Nuisance? A Neighborhood Feud or Racism? | WATCH
Joe Biden & Kamala Harris - screenshot
Historic Move: Biden Halts 2024 Campaign - Endorses Harris for Nomination | WATCH Live
Joe Biden - screenshot
Biden Will NOT Seek Reelection | WATCH Live Coverage
Alexis Smith (Miss Kansas) - screenshot
Bloop! Miss Kansas (Alexis Smith) Calls Out Abuser in Audience - Pledges to Combat Domestic Violence | WATCH
FUBU cap
FUBU Relaunch Brings Its Past, Present and Future to Atlanta Fashion Week 2024 | WATCH
Amber Rose at 2024 GOP convention - screenshot
Amber Rose Faces Political Limbo Amid Trump Endorsement Says Candace Owens Who Calls for GOP Inclusivity | WATCH
Kat Hawley - screenshot
The Pulse of Entertainment: Kat Hawley Debuts with ‘X-IX-VIII’ - Featuring Greg Manning, Steve Cole | LISTEN
1 2 3 8,197