During the second half of Sunday’s All-Star Game in Chicago, Brittney Griner’s fellow W.N.B.A. players honored her by sporting jerseys with her name and number.
Since February, Griner has been detained in Russia on drug-related accusations.
At halftime, Griner’s wife, Cherelle Griner, sat courtside with the All-Stars, who lined up in matching No. 42 jerseys with “Griner” printed on the back. A number of players hugged Cherelle Griner, who said during the ESPN broadcast that she was grateful that they did not forget about her wife.
One of the team captains and forward for the Las Vegas Aces, A’ja Wilson, claimed that sporting the jerseys made “a statement in itself.”
“We are not going to stop until everyone understands how serious this really is,” she said.
At an airport close to Moscow, Griner was accused of possessing hashish oil in her luggage while she was there to play for the professional team U.M.M.C. Yekaterinburg.
She admitted to the drug charges last week but was not legally found guilty. She might spend the next ten years in a penal colony.
According to the U.S. State Department, Griner was “wrongfully detained,” and they are working to negotiate her release.