WNBA star Brittney Griner and five other players were ejected from a game this weekend after a near brawl broke out between the Phoenix Mercury and the Dallas Wings. The fight occurred when Griner, a center for the Mercury, got tangled with Kristine Anigwe, a rookie from the Wings. Griner and Anigwe started to throw punches and then Griner started chasing Anigwe which led to players and officials holding them back.
That girl didn’t want Brittney Griner’s smoke. She took off running. 😂😂August 11, 2019
Both players were thrown out after officials reviewed the video as well as Mercury's Diana Taurasi and Briann January and the Wings' Kayla Thornton and Kaela Davis. Taurasi was not playing the game, but she was ejected for leaving the bench.
“Today I went on the court to make sure my teammate didn’t get jumped,” Taurasi said, reports USA Today. “[Griner] got punched in the face and then someone ran on her back and threw punches at her face. I would do that 100 times out of 100 times.”
Taurasi went on to say that Griner gets beat up on a consistent basis and she went on to the court to protect her teammate.
“You’ve got to protect yourself, that’s just the bottom line,” said Taurasi, who also received a technical foul from the bench Thursday at Los Angeles per a report from the Arizona Republic. “BG protected herself. We all have her back. We’re with her.
“When you have referees that can’t handle situations and let situations get to that point. BG gets pretty much beat up every single game. The minute she steps on the floor, she gets basically physically abused. A person can just take so much. When you get hit in the face and the refs aren’t willing to protect you, you’ve got to protect yourself. They definitely don’t pay you enough money not to protect yourself in this league.”0comments
Griner did not talk to reporters after the game but it's possible she and the other five players ejected from the game could serve suspensions. It would be a big loss for the Mercury to not have Griner who has emerged as one of the best players in the league.
Since being drafted by the Mercury in the first round of the 2013 WNBA Draft, the Baylor alum has been named an All-Star six times, she has won WNBA Defensive Player of the Year twice and she led the Mercury to a WNBA title in 2014.