After several months of protests and petitions, Brittney Griner was finally freed from Russian imprisonment. The news led fans to recall a now-deleted social media post from actor Vin Diesel, and wonder if he may have influenced this moment.
Back in November, the Fast & Furious actor shared a photo of himself holding a thumb up during a Los Angeles Lakers game with LeBron James and Anthony Davis looking on. The 55-year-old’s caption read: “I need Brittney Griner home before Christmas.”
Since Diesel’s wish came true, social media users couldn’t help but fantasize about him playing one of his action-packed movie roles and freeing the Phoenix Mercury player himself. “Putin watching Vin Diesel land in Russia to save Brittney Griner,” one user tweeted alongside a meme of a frightened man. Another tweet showed a car driving through the air with the caption “Vin Diesel on his way to Russia to save Brittney Griner.”
The 32-year-old was detained back in February for possession of a marijuana pen while in Russia. She was then moved to a harsh labor camp several months later with very minimal communication with her family allowed. Additionally, there was no knowledge of where exactly she was being held. Several athletes and celebrities expressed their support for the Houston native while the United States attempted to work out an exchange with the Russian government.
At last, on Thursday (Dec. 8), Griner was swapped for Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout. “She’s safe, she’s on a plane, she’s on her way home,” Joe Biden said on Thursday morning with Griner’s wife Cherelle by his side. “After months of being unjustly detained in Russia, held under intolerable circumstances, Brittney will soon be back in the arms of her loved ones, and she should have been there all along.”
See reactions to the accuracy of Vin Diesel’s deleted Instagram post below.