Brittney Griner turns down Harlem Globetrotters

By Larry Hartstein | Senior Analyst

Brittney Griner is averaging 15.3 points and 2.9 blocks for the Phoenix Mercury. (USATSI)
Brittney Griner is averaging 15.3 points and 2.9 blocks for the Phoenix Mercury. (USATSI)

Brittney Griner won't be joining the Harlem Globetrotters this fall, though the touring entertainers made her the first pick in their annual player draft on Tuesday.

Griner doesn't sound philosophically opposed. She had already committed to playing this winter in China after her debut WNBA season with Phoenix.

"While it's an honor to be considered, I am under contract with the Phoenix Mercury and the Zhejiang Golden Bulls," Griner told espnW. "And I am 100-percent committed to doing all I can to bring championships to our fans."

The 6-foot-8 Griner dunked twice in her professional debut, becoming the first WNBA player with two dunks in one game.

The Globetrotters, who have two female players, also drafted three male college players and 43-year-old Yankees closer Mariano Rivera. That continued a tradition in which the Globetrotters choose a superstar from another sport.

No word yet if Rivera, who's retiring from Major League Baseball this fall, is interested.

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