The prejudgment stems from a fight the couple had on April 22, which resulted in a call to the police. According to the league, Johnson pushed Griner in the shoulder. From there, the Phoenix Mercury center hit Johnson in the back of the neck as the incident was filled with wrestling, punches and the throwing and swinging of objects.
Ultimately, both women were arrested, with Griner emerging with a bite wound on her finger and scratches on her wrist from the incident. Johnson ended up being scratched above her lip. She diagnosed with a concussion.
“We fought, we hashed it out, we talked it out, we were like, ‘Did we really just do that?'” Johnson mentioned. “Then we hugged, and we were like, ‘OK, the cops are coming.'”
Looking back on what happened, Johnson admitted she was surprised she and Griner were arrested.
“The police said they have no idea who was the victim,” the Tulsa Shock forward told the Associated Press Tuesday (May 26). “They had no idea. It surprised me, but I can’t control how people take it, I can’t control how people handle it, I can only control what I do from here on out.”
As for what caused her dispute with Griner, Johnson said it all stemmed from multiple triggers led to the dispute with Griner.
“We know how we care about each other, and we fought out of that,” Johnson stated. “A lot of it was passion. We fought because we were mad that this person felt like this, or this person said this.”
Although Johnson and Griner were able to squash the brief beef, the women still felt the wrath of the WNBA, which suspended them for seven games each without pay.
Johnson is known for being a two-time All-Star for the Shock , while Griner’s claim to fame lies with being the reigning WNBA Defensive Player of the Year and one of the players who helped the Mercury win the WNBA title last season.
For her part, Johnson isn’t taking her suspension lying down She is currently appealing the punishment and confessed that her lawyer is ready in case further action is required said her lawyer is ready if further action is needed.
“Do I think it was a little much? Yes,” Johnson said. “Especially because of the way we are and the way we handled it.”
All in all, the fight wasn’t enough to cause Johnson to think twice about her plans to marry Griner. The couple tied the knot as planned a few weeks after the incident.
“I never had any second thoughts,” said Johnson. “Even though it was a situation that had never happened to me before, in any relationship that I’ve had, it was almost like, ‘OK, I partook in the situation, too, and I did fight as well.'”
Realizing how some may question her reason for remaining with Griner, Johnson touched on her understanding of the significance of domestic violence.
“If it’s something that I can work through, or it’s even something that I was a part of, you’ve got to take responsibility and either decide you want to move forward with the person that you care so much about or not, and I care a lot about this person, and it was my decision to move forward, and she did the same,” she said.
“I don’t want anyone to have to deal with that situation, any of my sisters, or even any of my teammates to deal with a situation like that. I’d probably tell them to leave, but if they were like, ‘Man, but we’ve been through so much, and we care about each other more than just this one incident,’ then there’s more pros than cons.”
For folks judging Johnson and Griner based off the fight, Johnson stated the pair’s relationship is on solid ground and those watchers “have to be realistic.”
“We still feel the same,” she said. “If anything, it brought us a little bit closer.”
Nevertheless, fans will have to wait until Phoenix’s game against Minnesota on June 27 before they see Griner again. Should Johnson’s suspension remain, then she will return for her first game back on June 26 against New York.