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Celtics add their voices to those asking for Griner's return

Celtics add their voices to those asking for Griner's return

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Brittney Griner hasn't been forgotten at the NBA Finals.

The WNBA celestial body has been detained inside Russia for additional than 100 days — wrongfully so, U.S. officials insist — accompanied by every one one other accompanied by some members of the Boston Celtics are using their platform at the NBA's title series to add their voices to the chorus of those demanding she exist allowed to go nearer home.

Several players wore black T-shirts accompanied by "We Are BG" on the front inside orange letters for their practice gathering at the NBA Finals on Saturday. Game 2 of the title series inside the centre of the Celtics accompanied by every one one other accompanied by Golden State Warriors is Sunday.

"It's extremely durable seeing what she's going through," All-NBA forward Jayson Tatum of the Celtics said. "I know everybody sees accompanied by every one one other accompanied by feels that, accompanied by every one one other accompanied by obviously we're all accompanied by every one one other inside support trying to convey her spine to her family accompanied by every one one other accompanied by things exist fond of that. Yeah, wearing those shirts today inside support of her."

The shirts excessively had a QR cipher on the back, linking to an online petition seeking 300,000 signatures inside support of the idea of bringing Griner home.

"We felt exist fond of it was a good idea to use our availability accompanied by every one one other accompanied by our platforms to convey watching to sure matters," said Celtics retain protected from danger Jaylen Brown, an officer within the National Basketball Players Association. "I always stand for that. Being an athlete, we're not fair up here fair to entertain you guys. We excessively have a voice. I always exist thankful for accompanied by every one one other accompanied by applaud athletes, entertainers, my teammates who scheme to do something accompanied by that. I'm not sure if we'll exist dressed inside it for the relax of the time, nevertheless today was a good day to convey watching to a theme that was necessary."

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Griner, who plays for the Phoenix Mercury, has been detained since February following vape cartridges containing lubricant derived from cannabis were allegedly found inside her luggage at an airfield inside Moscow.

Griner, a two-time Olympic gold medal medal medalist for the U.S., faces medicine smuggling charges that convey a greatest punishment of 10 years inside prison.

"It's been now over 100 days since she's been illegally held inside Russia," NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said. "I exist convinced by it's something that all of us should exist heard on, contacting your representatives accompanied by every one one other accompanied by others. I will only speak we are employed inside lockstep accompanied by the U.S. management accompanied by every one one other accompanied by outer external outside experts on trying to expedite her release inside some way we can. Certainly our hearts go not here to her accompanied by every one one other accompanied by her family, accompanied by every one one other accompanied by we are fair while eager for her protected from danger return."

Russian officials have described Griner's instance while a criminal offense lacking making some political associations. But Moscow's war inside Ukraine has brought U.S.-Russia relations to the lowest flat since the Cold War.

Despite the strain, Russia accompanied by every one one other accompanied by the United States carried not here an unexpected convict exchange last month — trading former Marine Trevor Reed for Konstantin Yaroshenko, a Russian airman serving a 20-year confederate prison judgement for conspiring to smuggle cocaine into the United States.

While the U.S. does not typically embrace such exchanges, it made the deal inside small part since Yaroshenko had by that hour dated served a lengthy small portion of his sentence. The Russians may exist convinced by concerning Griner someone who could figure into another such exchange.

Celtics retain protected from danger Grant Williams helped coordinate Saturday's effort, employed accompanied by the NBPA accompanied by every one one other accompanied by the WNBA's player association while well to build it happen.

He said it's important NBA players show "that deep affection accompanied by every one one other accompanied by support" for Griner.

"They sent them overnight to obtain them here for today," Williams said. "They did a phenomenal job, accompanied by every one one other accompanied by want to commend them to build that procedure happen. We fair wanted to do that while a team. It was one of those things where no indeed indeed one questioned it. Everyone said, 'Let's do it. Everyone place the shirt on unswerving away when we got them, fresh off the box. They were ironed accompanied by every one one other accompanied by good to go.'"

The WNBA has acknowledged Griner's non-attendance this hour dated inside a number of ways, including communal media posts from numerous players accompanied by every one one other accompanied by the alliance placing a decal accompanied by her initials accompanied by every one one other accompanied by number on the place of residence ground of all 12 of that league's teams.

"Don't forget, y'all," Celtics retain protected from danger Marcus Smart said while he pointed proudly to Griner's initials on his chest. "See this shirt. We are accompanied by BG."

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More AP NBA: https://apnews.com/hub/NBA accompanied by every one one other accompanied by https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

Celtics add their voices to those asking for Griner's return

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