How should WNBA players pay tribute to Brittney Griner? They can vow to no longer play in authoritarian countries in the offseason. Because that’s how we got here in the first place.
As the 26th WNBA season begins on Friday, there’s a familiar — and dominant — face missing from action. She’s not in uniform this year, yet Brittney Griner is impossible to miss.
The 6-foot-9, 31-year-old center for the Phoenix Mercury, one of the most gifted and graceful athletes of her generation, awaits trial on drug charges in Russia. Meanwhile, her league has pledged to keep her at the forefront of its mind: Griner’s initials and her No. 42 jersey will be on the sideline of every WNBA court this season, and her charity, BG’s Heart and Sole Shoe Drive, will continue its work in Phoenix and beyond.