WNBA star Brittney Griner chronicled the bizarre knife attack on her and a teammate last week in Shenyang, China, in a conversation with ESPNw.
A Chinese man chased Griner, who plays on the Beijing Great Wall team, on a team bus. There, the assailant wildly swung a knife. Griner recalls:
Now the situation was even more dangerous than if we had stayed outside — we were trapped. The attacker jabbed at me first because I was closest. He missed. But on the second jab, he caught my elbow. Luckily, I was wearing a jacket (my favorite Nike hoodie), so the fabric absorbed most of the damage. Also, the man was using a knife with a dull tip; it was more of a carving knife. The blade itself was sharp, but the point was more rounded.
The 6’8” Griner says the man appeared drunk and disturbed. He ordered the players on their knees. “They told me he was yelling, ‘I’m going to kill you!’ He also said that we had hit his wife, that we had hurt his wife, and that he was going to kill us for that. The teammate next to me began yelling back at him; she told him to leave us alone.”
The man ultimately left the bus and chased a car outside of it. The police shortly thereafter apprehended the crimson-covered assailant and put him in a mental institution. Griner, cut but otherwise okay, reflects, “The thing I keep reminding myself is that the incident seemed to be random — we were just in the wrong place at the wrong time.”