A probe into the illegal arrest and detention of Brittney Griner by Russian Authorities.
Brittney Griner is being detained by Russian authorities for allegedly possessing cannabis oil in her airport luggage. Throughout, the history of her athletic career, Brittney Griner never tested positive for any illegal substances. She does not have a extensive criminal record full of violent offenses. She is a human being and not a political pawn. What has happened to Brittney Griner is completely astonishing and repugnant. She needs to be released from Russian custody immediately. Where is the public outcry? Do you not realize an unjustified act commited against one woman effects all women?
Brittany Griner is more than a random professional athlete caught in a drug scandal, she is a ground breaking sports trailblazer. She was a force to be reckoned with during her glory days at Baylor University. Her skills and agility earned her multiple NCAA titles and championships. She was slated to change the “game” by becoming the first woman to be drafted into the NBA back in 2013. Mark Cuban wanted to take a gamble and draft her to the Houston Mavericks. Her 6’9 and 208lb frame was fully capable of competing at the NBA level. She was such a dominating force as the leader of Baylor University woman’s basketball team.
However, controversy and backlash followed once talks of drafting a woman into professional mens sports started circulating. The WNBA was fully set to draft her as a “first round” draft pick for women’s professional basketball. The WNBA couldn’t afford to loose their most promising prospect. The drafting of a woman to male sports would have made the WNBA less significant, I am assuming. I personally feel the drafting of BG to the NBA would have eventually led to a joint partnership with the WNBA.
Maybe the two enterprises could have adopted a system where some of the male players played in the WNBA league in order to boost sales and attendance numbers. By allowing WNBA players to compete in the NBA for a season or two, WNBA players would have access to equal pay. Ultimately, a group of coaches (WNBA and NCAA) reached out to Mark Cuban and pleaded that he “not” draft Brittney Griner. Although, if Mark Cuban would have stuck to his guns, and drafted Griner, she would be “bank rolling” and making some serious coins. I am not saying it’s Mark Cuban fault that BG is in Russian custody.
But, I do blame the WNBA and their lack of advocacy for player pay equality. The highest paid NBA player earns $45,000,000 per year. The highest WNBA player receives $225,000 per year. The salary disparity between NBA and WNBA players is an atrocity. The owners of the arenas that house professional basketball games (NBA and WNBA) could supplement WNBA players salaries. Clearly, they don’t give a damn about woman. These arenas bring in millions of dollars of revenue during NBA seasons. Some of the money produced from the men’s games should be given to women basketball players. Just food for thought!
A large percentage of WNBA players have no other choice but to cross American borders in order to receive higher salaries. Some WNBA players are paid as little as $45,000 per year in the USA. BG played for Russia because the Russians were paying her $1,000,000 per season. To those who say, “she had no business in Russia”, I say, on the contrary, she had a million reasons to be in Russia.
If some women didn’t hate other women so emmensly, she would have been earning a decent basketball salary as an NBA player. The men of the NBA were on board with drafting BG. I am not saying she was being welcomed to the league with open arms. However, “she had seat at the table,” as Solange Knowles would say. However, some jealous and miserable *beep* open their mouth’s and shot her opportunity down.
March is Women’s History month. Not only, are we suppose to support woman during this month (and throughout the year), we are also charged to empower women. I always speak highly of women I have associated with in terms of professional pedigree. Even, if I don’t speak with the woman, per say, on a regular basis, I still follow the “girl code.” I always have something nice to say when I mention another woman’s name in a room full of opportunity. I do the same for my male counterparts as well.
Some women are vipers, they smile and grin in your face, but will talk about you like dog to other professionals because they assume that makes them look more appealing. These type of woman, never receive the desires of their heart because they don’t understand tact and candor. Key “take- aways,” watch what you say and how you say it!
Moving forward, I am going to need Mark Cuban to keep the same energy and excitement he had for Brittney Griner in 2013, going! He negotiated a deal for her before and Brittney Griner needs a deal now. In addition to Mark Cuban advocating on her behalf, so should the entire WNBA, NBA, NCAA, The United States Department of State, the United States Amred Forces, Michelle Obama (she played ball in college), Steph Curry, LeBron James, Shaq, Kevin Durant and the whole entire world! #FreeBrittney #staystrongbrittney
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