- Houston, TXHometown
- Nimitz High School
- 1Overall Rank
- 1Position Rank
In many ways, Brittney Griner still is a work in progress, which may seem almost a shocking tag to hang on a player who almost certainly will herald major changes in the women's game.
Griner is 6 feet 5 and her doctor says she could continue growing to 6-7 or 6-9. At present height, she is extremely long. She also has a grace of movement that is striking, especially for her size. The combination of that length and fluidity gives her the ability to dunk a basketball easier than any player who came before her, but it also confers her most formidable talent, which is shot-blocking.
Disbelief could be the source of most of Griner's blocks - disbelief that she could be beaten on a move, but recover to still snuff the shot. She has enough quickness, particularly in close quarters, to allow her length to erase any of her defensive mistakes. The disbelief factor also comes into play in apparent run-outs, when Griner builds up a head of steam in the open court and unfurls that long body to hunt down even the fastest of fast breakers.
The open court also is her biggest ally offensively. Griner gets up and down the court better than any player her size, certainly at the high-school level, because she moves so well and, in addition, makes considerable effort to get down fast.
In a halfcourt setting, Griner has more of a forward's game. Her absence of lower-body girth makes her prone to being rooted out of the low post, or undercut by wily defenders. She also does not completely know her way around the paint yet, leading her to mistime or inaccurately judge close-in shots. Griner also must improve footwork and could become a devastating inside scorer if she simply developed a reliable jump hook.
Griner does have an occasionally effective mid-range shot, plus handles the ball better than expected for someone her size. Her handle is best put to use attacking the rim, when her combination of first step, agility and length makes her as formidable as they come.
Averaged 23 points, 11 rebounds, 6 blocks as sophomore at Nimitz (Houston, TX)