WNBA player Brittney Griner recently played her first basketball game on Friday for the first time since being arrested in Russia and enduring a roughly year-long ordeal, and she admitted that "Hearing the national anthem, it definitely hit different."
This is a massive change of heart for Griner, who said back in 2020 that the national anthem shouldn't be played at sporting events.
Griner spent ten months in a Russian prison after being convicted of violating Russia's strict anti-drug laws. She was arrested at Moscow's Sheremetyevo Airport after authorities discovered vape canisters with cannabis oil in her luggage.
She was then used as a political bargaining chip by Russian President Vladimir Putin, who used her to trade for infamous arms dealer Viktor Bout, who is referred to as the "merchant of death" by some.
Griner's ordeal seems to have given her some perspective on how lucky she is to be an American. Her experience with actual tyranny seems to have made her much more appreciative of the anthem that three years ago she wanted silenced.
Griner is playing in her tenth WNBA season with the Phoenix Mercury and hopes to get back to where she was before her career was interrupted by her arrest in Russia.