Brittney Griner to make season debut Friday vs. Lynx

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - SEPTEMBER 10: Brittney Griner #42 of the Phoenix Mercury walks on the court during a break in the first quarter of a game against the Las Vegas Aces at T-Mobile Arena on September 10, 2023 in Las Vegas, Nevada. The Aces defeated the Mercury 100-85. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
Brittney Griner’s return is bringing the Mercury back to full strength. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

A fractured toe has so far delayed Brittney Griner’s season debut, but no more.

The Phoenix Mercury star is not only playing but starting on Friday against the Minnesota Lynx after missing the first 10 games of the season. Mercury starting guard Bec Allen is also returning from a concussion, giving Phoenix its ideal starting lineup for the first time this season.

Griner is returning the court after averaging 17.5 points, 6.3 rebounds, 2.2 assists and 1.6 blocks per game last season, her first after returning from her imprisonment in Russia.

The Mercury went 9-31 that season. This one has been slightly better despite Griner’s absence with a 4-6 start despite Allen, signed from the Connecticut Sun last offseason, missing five games.

Griner’s first game back figures to be a tough test, with the Lynx currently topping the Western Conference with a 7-2 record.

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