Brittney Griner breaks 30 for the first time in her career

PHOENIX, AZ - MAY 17: Brittney Griner
PHOENIX, AZ - MAY 17: Brittney Griner /

Brittney Griner, the exalted Phoenix Mercury center, needed a strong performance after she collected just two rebounds in 31 minutes in Sunday’s season-opening loss to Dallas.

If 32 points and 10 rebounds aren’t strong enough, almost nothing is. That was the line Griner put up Wednesday night, as the Mercury pummeled the Indiana Fever for an 85-62 win at Talking Stick Resort Arena.

Griner crossed the 30-point mark for the first time in her career, besting her previous high of 29, which was set last year. She racked up 21 points in the first half and was virtually unstoppable down low.

“She’s got really good guards around her, they’re feeding her the ball at the right time, she’s getting easy baskets, so I was very happy for her,” Phoenix head coach Sandy Brondello told reporters after the game.

PHOENIX, AZ – MAY 17: Brittney Griner
PHOENIX, AZ – MAY 17: Brittney Griner /

With a pair of reputable point guards in Leilani Mitchell and Danielle Robinson, Phoenix hopes to set Griner up for more outstanding efforts. The 6’9″ center outfoxed Indiana’s defenders in the paint, resulting in a bevy of layups and three-point plays. Shooting 13 of 15 from the floor, Griner displayed an assertiveness that was missing in Sunday’s contest.

Griner cooled off in the third quarter, scoring just two points, but she added nine more in the fourth to complete her career night.

“It does feel good to put it under my belt. It started off kind of slow…and then it just started coming and that’s how I’m going to go into each game,” she said.

Griner’s double-double was the 22nd of her career. She also had three blocks.