Brittney Griner Opens Up About Mental Health Struggles During Russian Detainment

Brittney Griner Opens Up About Mental Health Struggles During Russian Detainment

Phoenix Mercury basketball star Brittney Griner recently revealed the harrowing mental health challenges she faced during her detainment in Russia after being found with cannabis oil in her luggage in February 2022. Griner spent almost 300 days in detention and was sentenced to nine years in prison.

In an emotional interview with ABC’s “20/20,” Griner shared that she contemplated suicide multiple times during the initial weeks of her detainment. Despite her struggles, she ultimately persevered, citing her family as a motivating factor to endure the ordeal.

Griner also shed light on the harsh conditions she endured while in prison, including dirty cells, inadequate hygiene supplies, and deplorable living conditions.

The U.S. State Department intervened, negotiating a prisoner swap in December 2022, securing Griner’s release in exchange for Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout.

Griner, known for her contributions to both the WNBA and the United States national team, is preparing for her 11th WNBA season after returning to the league last spring. Despite the challenges she faced, Brittney Griner remains committed to her basketball career and is expected to represent the U.S. in the 2024 Paris Olympics.


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