Mercury re-sign Brittney Griner on reported 1-year deal

Feb 21, 2023, 10:40 AM | Updated: 10:42 am

Brittney Griner #42 of the Phoenix Mercury celebrates with Mercury President Vince Kozar after the ...

Brittney Griner #42 of the Phoenix Mercury celebrates with Mercury President Vince Kozar after the team defeated the Las Vegas Aces 87-84 in Game Five of the 2021 WNBA Playoffs semifinals to win the series at Michelob ULTRA Arena on October 8, 2021 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

(Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

The Phoenix Mercury have officially re-signed center Brittney Griner, which according to multiple reports is on a one-year deal.

Her Hoops Stats’ Richard Cohen first reported that the deal is for one year, protected and worth $165,100. It left Phoenix with enough for two veteran minimums and two base minimums to fill out their final four standard roster spots.

“It’s a great day for all of us to announce that Brittney Griner has officially signed to play for the Mercury in 2023,” Mercury general manager Jim Pitman said Tuesday in a team release. “We missed BG every day that she was gone and, while basketball was not our primary concern, her presence on the floor, in our locker room, around our organization and within our community was greatly missed.

“We will continue to use the resources of our organization to support her, on and off the floor, and we are thrilled for her that she gets to return to basketball, which she loves so dearly. This is a special signing and today is a special day for all of us.”

The 32-year-old had one of the best years of her nine-year career in her most recent season in 2021, posting 20.5 points per game on 57.5% shooting, 9.5 rebounds, 2.7 assists and 1.9 blocks en route to her eighth All-Star appearance.

Griner was detained in Russia for 10 months and missed the entire 2022 WNBA season after being arrested for having a hash-like cannabis oil in her backpack. As a free agent, she made a promise to play for Phoenix in 2023 following a United States-led prisoner swap that freed her.

“I do not think any of us will forget where we were on Dec. 8 when we heard BG was coming home or on Dec. 15 when she announced she intended not only to play basketball in 2023 but that it would be for the Mercury,” Mercury president of business operations Vince Kozar said through a release. “And I know none of us will ever forget what it will feel like to welcome her back onto her home floor on May 21.

“To know BG is to love and appreciate BG, and we can’t wait to show her that in person with thousands and thousands of her biggest supporters exactly three months from today at our Welcome Home Opener.”

The center brings many accolades including being a two-time scoring champion. She made the All-WNBA First and Second Team three times each, is a four-time WNBA Defensive Player of the Year and made the WNBA All-Defensive First and Second Team a combined seven times.

She teams back up with superstar Diana Taurasi, who signed a multi-year deal to stay in Phoenix on Saturday.

The Mercury start the season on May 19 at the Los Angeles Sparks.

Phoenix Mercury

Phoenix Mercury huddle during a game against the Seattle Storm on June 16, 2024. (Jeremy Schnell/Ar...

Associated Press

Kahleah Copper, Brittney Griner guide Mercury to wire-to-wire victory over Storm

Kahleah Copper had 30 points, Brittney Griner scored a season-high 28 and the Mercury never trailed in a victory over the Storm on Sunday.

1 day ago

Brittney Griner...

Associated Press

Mercury battle, fall short to Aces despite 25 points from Brittney Griner

Brittney Griner scored 25 points and Diana Taurasi added 22, but the Mercury fell short to the visiting Aces on Thursday night.

4 days ago

Charisma Osborne poses with a Mercury jersey during the WNBA Draft...

Ryan Pasiecznik

Mercury sign 2024 draft pick Charisma Osborne, waive forward Morgan Bertsch

The Phoenix Mercury have signed guard Charisma Osborne, their 2024 WNBA Draft pick, and waived forward Morgan Bertch.

4 days ago

Kahleah Copper...

Ryan Pasiecznik

Kahleah Copper: Making USA Basketball’s Olympic roster is my ‘No. 1 moment’

Phoenix Mercury guard Kahleah Copper was left off the U.S. women's basketball roster to compete in the 2021 Tokyo Olympics.

5 days ago

Caitlin Clark, Indiana Fever...

Dan Bickley

USA Basketball missed with Caitlin Clark’s exclusion from Paris Olympics roster

The WNBA is one of the hottest topics in America. That is a victory. Except the conversation gets political. It gets racial. It gets ugly.

6 days ago

Phoenix Mercury stars Diana Taurasi (right), Brittney Griner (left) and Kahleah Copper will reporte...

Arizona Sports

US women’s team for Paris Olympics features 3 Phoenix Mercury stars

Phoenix Mercury stars Diana Taurasi, Brittney Griner and Kahleah Copper will represent Team USA at the Paris Olympics this summer. 

6 days ago

Mercury re-sign Brittney Griner on reported 1-year deal