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WNBA's Brittney Griner taking time off to focus on mental health

Griner did not travel with her team, the Phoenix Mercury, on its two-game road trip to Chicago and Indiana this week.
WNBA's Brittney Griner taking time off to focus on mental health
Posted at 10:13 AM, Jul 31, 2023
and last updated 2023-07-31 11:13:18-04

WNBA star Brittney Griner is taking a break from basketball to focus on her mental health. 

Griner did not travel with her team, the Phoenix Mercury, on its two-game road trip to Chicago and Indiana this week. 

"The Mercury fully support Brittney and we will continue to work together on a timeline for her return," the Mercury said in a statement. 

The team did not reveal whether Griner's mental health issues are related to her 10-month stay in a Russian prison.

SEE MORE: Griner confronted at Dallas Airport by 'provocateur'

The basketball star was convicted last year in a Russian court on drug charges, months after police found cannabis oil in her luggage the Moscow airport. Despite Griner maintaining that she had been prescribed the oil to treat pain, she was sentenced to nine-years in prison.

She was released in December in a surprise prisoner swap with notorious arms dealer Viktor Bout.

Griner spent about 18 months away from competitive basketball before returning to action with the Mercury at the beginning of the season. 

The star picked up where she left off, averaging 18 points and six rebounds per game. However, the Mercury are struggling to win games. 

They are currently 6-18 this season, putting them in 10th place in the 12-team league.

SEE MORE: WNBA players launch 3-on-3 league as attendance rises


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