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New York coach Sandy Brondello was on her way to her team’s Friday morning shootaround when she heard the “disappointing” news that Russia had extended Brittney Griner’s pre-trial detention another 30 days.

Griner’s original detention date was set to end on May 19. The two-time Olympic gold medalist who plays for the Phoenix Mercury, was detained at a Moscow airport in February after vape cartridges containing oil derived from cannabis were allegedly found in her luggage.

Griner, 31, faces drug smuggling charges that carry a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison.

The 30-day extension could mean Griner’s case could go to trial soon.

Whatever is next on the legal horizon didn’t take the sting out of the latest news for Brondello, who coached Griner for eight years in Phoenix before taking over the New York Liberty this year.

“Obviously very disappointed to hear they are extending BG’s stay in Russia and we’ve got to do everything we can to get her out,” Brondello said. “We have to free BG. We need her back here. Hopefully the government can do something about it sooner rather than later.”

The 6-foot-9 Griner appeared for the brief hearing at a court outside Moscow handcuffed, wearing an orange hoodie and holding her face down.

While the extension wasn’t unexpected, players across the league saw the photos and video of Griner and said it was all difficult to see.

“It was a gut punch. I saw the pictures,” said Fever guard Danielle Robinson who played with Griner in Phoenix for a season. “You get to know her and her family, what she’s all about, what she stands for. Knowing her heart, she has such a heart for other people, it’s super sad.”

Ariel Atkins, who played with Griner in the Tokyo Olympics last summer, said she doesn’t understand everything in Griner’s case but that she “just wants to do anything that I can to help bring her home. Just a devastating situation. I can’t imagine how her family feels right now.”

Griner’s wife Cherelle, who graduated from North Carolina Central University earlier this month, hasn’t said much about the stress on their family.

The news of Griner’s detention being extended had Mercury guard Brianna Turner recalling good deeds done by her teammate, moving her to post on Twitter hours later a story of how Griner would save her leftover food and give it to a homeless person.

“Of course with her on my mind I thought to do the same today” Turner wrote. “Sometimes a free meal can make a person’s day. If possible, do something nice for a stranger today.”

Griner’s agent Lindsay Kagawa Colas started posting on Twitter two weeks ago a count of the days that Griner’s been detained overseas. Friday was the 85th day.

Hours after the extension Kagawa Colas tweeted that Griner’s team expects the government to “use all options available to immediately and safely bring Griner home.”

Others have followed suit and are tweeting about the days Griner has been detained, including Seattle Storm All-Star Breanna Stewart and South Carolina coach Dawn Staley.

All seem determined to ensure Griner’s name and detention remain on people’s minds, then as Wings coach Vickie Johnson said, “let the league take care of it, and her lawyers.”

“Only thing I can do, I’m great friends with Brittney, is continue to pray for her and her family,” Johnson said. “Hopefully, she’s OK mentally and physically.”


AP Sports Writer Noah Trister contributed to this story from Washington.


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Illegal immigrants getting pallets of baby formula at detention center while shelves are nearly empty in American stores, US congresswoman declares

The congresswoman called it "unconscionable" and said the administration of President Joe Biden is responsible for the "open border policy" that is "crushing the middle class."

"They hate everything about [former President] Donald Trump so much ... they're willing to hurt their own citizens," Cammack added, saying it's "absolutely outrageous."

Cammack posted a second video later Wednesday and was no less outraged, saying the Border Patrol agent told her, "Kat, you would not believe the shipment I just brought in."

She went on to say that "he has been a Border Patrol agent for 30 years, and he has never seen anything quite like this. He is a grandfather, and he is saying that his own children can't get ... baby formula.”

While she wasn't happy that the baby formula was going to "illegals that are crossing into the United States," Cammack said "it is not the childrens’ fault at all."

Rather what is "infuriating" is "that this is another example of the America last agenda that the Biden administration continues to perpetuate," she added.

“I don't know about you, but if I am a mother in anywhere, any-town America, and I go to my local Walmart or Target or Publix or Safeway or Kroger or wherever it may be that you shop, and you are seeing their shelves, and you are seeing signs that you are not able to get baby formula, and then you see the American government sending by the pallet thousands and thousands of containers of baby formula to the border, that would make my blood boil," Cammack also said.

Anything else?

Cammack told her viewers that Republicans in Congress are doing what they can about the issue, but "we have zero leverage."

The federal Office of the Administration for Children & Families — which oversees the Office of Refugee Resettlement — on Thursday didn't immediately respond to TheBlaze's request for comment on Cammack's claims.

(H/T: Washington Examiner)

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