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Brittney Griner is officially returning to the WNBA after her Russian imprisonment

Brittney Griner is officially returning to the WNBA after her Russian imprisonment

There was talks she'd retire, but Griner has now signed a one-year contract with a WNBA team.

Brittney Griner is officially returning to the WNBA.

There was whispers she could retire form professional basketball altogether following her arrest and subsequent imprisonment over in Russia.

But the 32-year-old is choosing to play on, signing a one-year contract with the Phoenix Mercury, according to CNN.

Her new deal with the WNBA team comes less than three months after she was freed from a Russian jail.

Griner was slapped with a nine-and-a-half-year prison sentence after being found guilty of drug charges when vape cartridges containing marijuana were found in her luggage at a Russian airport.

At the time, Griner then pleaded guilty of smuggling drugs into Russia, but insisted that she had no “intent” to “break the law.”

Brittney Griner.

The 6-foot-9-inch star's sentence made international headlines and sparked debate around the world, with some big-name celebs calling for her release while others maintained that she broke the law and therefore deserved to be locked up.

After 10 months being bars, Griner was freed after the United States and Russia came to an agree to swap her for notorious firearms dealer Viktor Bour who was detained on American shores – a move that divided people even more.

Once arriving home, Griner said: “It feels so good to be home! The last 10 months have been a battle at every turn.

“I dug deep to keep my faith and it was the love from so many of you that helped keep me going. From the bottom of my heart, thank you to everyone for your help.

“I also want to make one thing very clear, I intend to play basketball for the WNBA’s Phoenix Mercury this season.”

Neither the Mercury or Griner herself have issued a statement on the deal, meaning the terms of her new contract have not been announced either.

Having played in Russia during the off-season, which is where she ran into trouble with authorities, Griner returns to the team who once drafted her with the first overall pick way in the 2013.

Just one year later, Griner led the Phoenix Mercury to a WNBA title before becoming the league's two-time scoring champion and eight-time blocks leader.

Oh, she also happens to be an eight-time WNBA All-Star too.

Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: Basketball, NBA, Russia