He sometimes wears a cape and no, he is not Frank Costanza’s lawyer from “Seinfeld.”
He sometimes jumps out of telephone booths and still manages to ball with Kobe Bryant, dropping 20-plus a night. And no, he is not Pau Gasol.
He is “superman” Dwight Howard and according to California State Northridge’s head coach, Jason Flowers, his alias is not Clark Kent, but rather Lady Lions senior guard Nikki Greene.
Flowers said Greene’s dominating performance of 21 points and 20 rebounds resembled play of Howard, except “her free throws are way better,” according to the Associated Press.
While Greene said she prefers comparisons to Minnesota Timberwolves’ Kevin Love or Boston Celtics’ Kevin Garnett, she hopes to keep up her dominant play in her next game when the No. 6 Lady Lions take on Miami (Fla.) Thursday night.
“I would love to see Nikki get 20-20 a game,” head coach Coquese Washington said in her Wednesday press conference.
“I don’t know if she will get 20-20 every night, but she certainly has to have a presence.”
That presence will have to be felt against a power rebounding team in Miami. While the Hurricanes have only one player over 6-foot-1, except 6-foot-6 senior center Shawnice Wilson, they have still managed to outrebound their opponents by a total of 37.
Despite maybe heightened expectations, Greene seems to not get caught up in the buzz.
“I’m looking to continue playing my game,” Greene said. “Whatever they throw at me, try to find an alternative. Keep a clear mind on everything and just play.”
Greene said continuing playing her game means making free throws, rebounding well and not relying on referees to call the fouls.
As Washington said, Greene does not have to be the star of the game, she definitely has to prove to be a factor.
If she can do that, Penn State will be tough to play against as it creates a potent, balanced team, Washington said.
The expected presence of the post play against Miami should take the Hurricanes’ attention away from the Lions’ backcourt of junior guard Maggie Lucas and senior guard Alex Bentley.
When Tennessee defeated Miami, in its only loss on the season, the Lady Volunteers were led by a combination of a center, freshman Bashara Graves, scoring 20 points, and guard, freshman Andraya Carter, who scored 16.
Thus, a balanced game of an offensive threat in the front court and backcourt will benefit the Lions.
Though it will not be easy.
“It’s going to be a battle because they’re a physical, athletic, defensive team,” Washington said.