Phoenix’s Brittney Griner WNBA defensive player of year


Phoenix Mercury center Brittney Griner has won the WNBA defensive player of the year award for the second straight season.

The 6-foot-8 star became the first player in league history to average at least four blocks a game with 105 in just 26 contests. Griner was suspended for the first seven games of the season following a domestic violence arrest.

The league publicly made the announcement Thursday afternoon.

Griner received 33 of the 39 first place votes from a national panel of sportswriters and broadcasters. New York rookie Kiah Stokes was second with two. Tina Charles, Briann January, Angel McCoughtry and Maya Moore each got one vote.

Griner becomes the sixth player to win the award in multiple seasons. Tamika Catchings won it five times and Sheryl Swoopes three. Lisa Leslie, Teresa Weatherspoon and Sylvia Fowles have won it twice.