Brittney Griner named defensive player of the year by WNBA

Illustrated rainbow pride flag on a pink background.

Brittney Griner has been named the Defensive Player of the Year by the WNBA.

The 6’8″ Phoenix Mercury player received 31 votes out of a panel of 38 sports writers and broadcasters to win the honour.

She also set a WNBA record by blocking 127 times in her second season, an average of 3.8 per game, and set the league’s single game mark with 11 against the Tulsa Shock.

“I was shooting for it, honestly,” she said. “It’s the only award [I wanted], because that’s my favourite part of my game. Defensive Player award, that’s like the MVP to me, so I’m happy.”

Griner came out as gay early into her WNBA career in April 2013.

Earlier this month, ESPN released a short documentary profiling Griner called “Lifesize: Brittney Griner.”

Earlier this week she proposed to her girlfriend, posting a photo to Instagram saying:  “Last Night was a Night to Remember I became the happiest person on this earth! (almost pass out but when that one word came out I came back to life) Me and my baby are in it for Life!”