All hands are on deck for the protection of Brittney Griner within the Phoenix Mercury team. On Saturday morning (June 10), the 32-year-old was excessively harassed by right-wing YouTube vlogger Alex Stein at the Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport, who claimed that the WNBA player “hates America.”
While the Mercury is “reviewing the incident,” they also shared a statement in support of Griner. “We are committed to our support of BG and advocating for all American hostages abroad. We will continue our support of marginalized communities and fighting the kind of hate that targeted us today. No one, regardless of identity, should ever fear for their safety. We will be coordinating with the WNBA on next steps.”
The WNBA also asserted that “the safety of Brittney Griner and all WNBA players is our top priority.”
“Prior to the season, the WNBA worked together with the Phoenix Mercury and Brittney Griner’s team to ensure her safety during her travel, which included charter flights for WNBA games and assigned security personnel with her at all times,” the statement said. “We remain steadfastly committed to the highest standards of security for players.”
Griner made her return to the WNBA earlier this season after being released through a negotiated prisoner exchange between the United States and Russian governments in December. The Houston native was sentenced to a nine-year prison term last August after being arrested at Moscow’s Sheremetyevo Airport last February, where she was found with vape canisters with cannabis oil in her luggage.
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