Phoenix Mercury's Brittney Griner during media day at Footprint Center in Phoenix on May 9, 2024. | Rob Schumacher/The Republic / USA TODAY NETWORK

Former President Donald Trump called the prisoner swap that freed WNBA star Brittney Griner from a Russian prison last year “not the greatest trade.”

During an interview this week with pro wrestler and social media influencer Logan Paul on his “Impaulsive” podcast, Trump was asked about the 2022 deal the Biden administration made that swapped Griner for Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout.

Trump said Bout was a “great arms dealer” who was traded for “the basketball player who wouldn’t stand up for the national anthem. She thought that was a good time to tie her sneakers. And that was not exactly the greatest trade. But he gave 6 billion dollars on top of it. Six billion, billion with a B, and they don’t know what they’re doing.”

Griner was not brought up as a topic by Paul or his co-host and came during a rambling discussion of Gaza and the Middle East and how, according to Trump, Iran was “broke” when he left office and is now supposedly thriving under President Biden.

Trump then suddenly segued into this (the segment starts at 29:17 of the podcast):

Biden “gave 6 billion for five hostages. You saw that recently, a couple of months ago. Six billion dollars for five hostages. He made the swap. The Prince of Terror they call him [Bout]. He’s the best arms dealer ever they say, who knows what that means, but he was a great arms dealer, for the basketball player who wouldn’t stand up for the national anthem. She thought that was a good time to tie her sneakers. And that was not exactly the greatest trade. But he gave 6 billion dollars on top of it. Six billion, billion with a B, and they don’t know what they’re doing.”

I have no idea what Trump is talking about in reference to the $6 billion and Griner. In December 2022, the U.S. swapped Bout for Griner, who had been held in prison for nine months on drug charges, but there is zero evidence of money changing hands.

He might have confused it with an unrelated case where the U.S. agreed to a prisoner swap with Iran in 2023 that allowed Tehran to access $6 billion in frozen oil revenue held in a bank in South Korea. But this had nothing do with Griner, a fact Trump doesn’t seem to know.

Griner has been a flashpoint for many on the right after she said in 2020 she would not stand for the national anthem to protest policing in the U.S. That is the backdrop to Trump’s snarky comment, “she thought that was a good time to tie her sneakers.”

After her release, Griner, who plays for the Phoenix Mercury, changed her stance on the anthem while not giving up her right to protest, contrasting the U.S. to Russia.

“One thing that’s good about this country is our right to protest,” Griner said. “You have a right to be able to speak out, question, to challenge, and do all these things. [After] what I went through, it just means a little bit more to me now. I was literally in a cage and could not stand the way I wanted to … and a lot of other situations. Just being able to hear my national anthem, see my flag, I definitely wanted to stand.”