Brittney Griner May 21, 2023; Phoenix, Arizona, USA; Phoenix Mercury center Brittney Griner (42) reacts after scoring against the Chicago Sky in the second half at Footprint Center. Mandatory Credit: Rick Scuteri-USA TODAY Sports

The inspiring Brittney Griner story of her return to the court after her wrongful imprisonment in Russia got another chapter this week as the WNBA star was officially named a starter in the upcoming WNBA All-Star game in her return season.

The news comes after Brittney Griner missed all of last season after she was arrested in Russia and given a nine-year prison sentence after authorities found a small amount of prescription cannabis oil in her luggage. Griner served 10 months in Russian custody before returning to the United States by way of a prisoner swap.

Griner made her return to the WNBA this season after spending over a year away from the court. And now not only is she back, but she’s also an All-Star game starter. And people had plenty to say about that on social media this week as a result.

This will be Griner’s ninth selection as an All-Star, including last year when she was named an honorary All-Star by WNBA commissioner Cathy Engelbert. The WNBA also honored Griner in a unique way at last year’s All-Star game as both teams wore No. 42 jerseys during the game’s second half as a tribute to her.

But there won’t need to be any special tributes this year – Griner will be there.