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Maya April Moore (born June 11, 1989) is an American professional basketball player at forward for the Minnesota Lynx of the WNBA and the Shanxi Flame of the Chinese league. Moore was the winner of the 2006 and 2007 Naismith Prep Player of the Year. She was selected as the John Wooden Award winner in 2009 after leading Connecticut to the undefeated national championship. The following season, Moore led Connecticut to its second straight national championship and continued its overall undefeated streak at 78; in the 2010–11 season, she led the Huskies in extending that streak to an NCAA both-gender record (all divisions) of 90. On May 18, 2011, Moore became the first female basketball player to sign with Jordan Brand.[1]

Moore was the first overall pick in the 2011 WNBA Draft, and joined a Minnesota Lynx team that already featured all-star caliber players in Seimone Augustusand Lindsay Whalen. Moore was the third-leading scorer on the team during the regular season with 13.2 points per game, which led all rookies. Moore earnedRookie of the Year honors.[2] Moore then helped lead her team to its first WNBA championship, the second number one draft pick to do so.

Since 2011, Moore has continued to excel, both with the Lynx and with overseas teams in Europe and China. Moore also won a gold medal with the U.S. women's basketball team in the 2012 London Olympics. She won her second WNBA championship in 2013, in a series where she was named MVP.[3]

ContentsEdit

 [hide*1 Early life

Early life[edit]Edit

Maya April Moore was born on June 11, 1989 in Jefferson City, Missouri. She is the daughter of Kathryn Moore. [4] Moore had her first exposure to basketball at the age of three. Her mother mounted a hoop on the back door of their apartment.[5]

High School Career[edit]Edit

As a junior in 2005–06, she was named the Naismith Prep Player of the Year after leading Collins Hill High School to Georgia's Class 5A state championship. She was only the second junior to win the Naismith award[6] Her first dunk was one-handed off an alley-oop pass in warm-ups at a dunk contest in Charlotte, NC in December 2005. She was 16 at the time.[7]

In December 2006, she led the Collins Hill Eagles over Poly (Long Beach, California) by a score of 75–61, resulting in her being selected unanimously as theMost Valuable Player of the Tournament of Champions in Chandler, Arizona. In the title game of the "T-Mobile Invitational" in Seattle, she scored 48 points in a win over St. Elizabeth (Wilmington, Delaware).

In 2007, Moore became Collins Hill High School's all-time leader in points and rebounds. During her four seasons at Collins Hill, the school amassed a 125–3 record.[6] Moore won 3 Georgia Class 5A State Championships. Collins Hill was ranked No. 1 and claimed the crown of National Champions in 2007 by USA Today (Ranked No. 2 in 2006 and Ranked No. 5 in 2005). Moore announced that she would play college basketball at the University of Connecticut.[8]

After she led Collins Hill High School to a third straight Georgia Class 5A state championship she received her second Naismith Prep Female Player of the Year in 2007.

Moore was named a WBCA All-American.[9] She participated in the 2007 WBCA High School All-America Game, where she scored 25 points[10] and earned MVP honors for the Red team.[11]

Time with the Georgia Metros[edit]Edit

Maya Moore played for the Georgia Metros 16U Nike Travel Team in both 2005 and 2006. The Georgia Metros went 73-6 in those two travel seasons, and Maya led them to four National Championships: The AAU 16U National Championship in Orlando (where she was the MVP, as a 15 year old) in 2005; the US Junior Nationals Championship in DC, twice, in both 2005 and 2006; and the Nike Nationals Championship in 2006. Notable teammates while with the Georgia Metros included Kelly Cain (Tennessee), Ashley Houts (Georgia), Alicia Manning (Tennessee), Morgan Toles (Auburn/FSU), Charenee Stevens (South Carolina), Taylor Turnbow (LSU), Jordan Greenleaf (Auburn), and D'Andra Moss (VCU).

University of Connecticut[edit]Edit

Moore led the Huskies to a 36–2 record in the 2007–08 NCAA season, their best record since their Final Four appearance of 2004. During the season, Moore averaged a team-high 17.8 points per game, and hit 42% of her three point shots. She was second to Candace Parker in the Associated Press Player of the Year voting. Moore also placed second on the team in rebounds with 7.6 per game and blocks with 1.6 per game. She was the first freshman, male or female, to be named the Big East Player of the Year. Moore won the award again as a sophomore. Moore's teammate, Tina Charles, won the award in 2010, while Moore went on to win the award in 2011, joining Villanova's Shelly Pennefather and former UConn player Kerry Bascom as three-time recipients.[12]

In 2010, Moore led the team in scoring and steals, and tied Charles for total rebounds en route to a 39–0 season, culminating in an NCAA National Championship.[13]

On March 7, against Syracuse, Maya Moore scored the 2,000th point of her college career. She is the first player at UConn to accomplish this feat as a junior.[14]

Working hard and playing good team basketball, respecting the game and trying to bring it as much honor as we can is a beautiful thing.

—Maya Moore[15]

During the 2009–10 season, some of the sports media considered whether the dominance of the UConn program was bad for women’s basketball. Some concluded it was not bad for the game, and supported the notions of playing hard and trying to play a beautiful game.[15]

Moore was the subject of an ESPN Sports Science video clip, discussing her vertical leap, court vision, and muscle memory. They discussed her ability to steal, noting that she can move her hands faster than the striking speed of a rattlesnake.[16]

Moore was named an AP First team All-American, the fourth time she has earned the honor, and only the second player in history to earn First Team honors for four years. The first such recipient was Courtney Paris.[17]

USA Basketball[edit]Edit

Moore was invited to the USA Basketball Women's National Team training camp in the fall of 2009, one of only three college players and the only junior to be invited to the training camp.[18] The team selected to play for the 2010 FIBA World Championship and the 2012 Olympics is usually chosen from these participants. At the conclusion of the training camp, the team will travel to Ekaterinburg, Russia, where they compete in the 2009 UMMC Ekaterinburg International Invitational.[18]

Moore was one of twenty players named to the national team pool. Twelve of this group will be chosen to represent the USA in the 2010 World Championships and the 2012 Olympics.[19]

[1][2]Moore playing for USA National team USA against the Select team.[3][4]Moore playing for USA Select team against the USA National team.

The USA National team began training in April 2010 to prepare for the FIBA World Championship starting in September 2010. Moore was one of the players selected for the training sessions, run by the national team coach Geno Auriemma. The teams played informal scrimmages, with one team made up of the players expected to be on the national team, and the other team made up of invited all star college players, referred to as the select team. Although Moore is still in college, she has been invited to be part of the national team. In the first two ten-minute games, Moore played with the national team and helped them to two wins. Then Moore switched jerseys, and played for the select team. In both games, the select team won, with Moore making the assist to put the team ahead, then stealing the ball and making the game winning shot in the final seconds. Moore ended up being on the winning side in all four games.[20]

Moore was named as one of the National team members to represent the USA Basketball team in the WNBA versus USA Basketball.[21] This game replaces the normal WNBA All-Star game with WNBA All-Stars versus USA Basketball, as part of the preparation for the FIBA World Championship for Women to be held in the Czech Republic during September and October 2010.[22]

Moore was one of 21 finalists for the U.S. Women’s Olympic Basketball Team Roster. The 20 professional women's basketball payers, plus one collegiate player (Brittney Griner), were selected by the USA Basketball Women’s National Team Player Selection Committee to compete for the final roster which will represent the USA at the 2012 Olympics in London.[23] Moore won a gold medal with Team USA in 2012, in doing so joining Sheryl SwoopesCynthia Cooper-DykeRuth RileyTamika Catchings and fellow UConn alumsKara WoltersSwin CashSue Bird, and Diana Taurasi on the elite list of female basketball players to have won NCAA titles, WNBA Championships and Olympic gold medals.

Professional basketball[edit]Edit

Maya Moore's professional career, like her high school and college career, has been filled with championships. In her first three years, she made three WNBA finals, one Eurobasket final, and two WCBA finals, and won five of the six possible championships she could have. Along the way, she has established herself as one of the best professional women's players in the game.

2011[edit]Edit

Moore was selected 1st overall in the 2011 WNBA Draft by the Minnesota Lynx.[24] She joined a team that already featured talented players like Lindsay WhalenRebekkah Brunson, and Seimone Augustus, and helped the Lynx to their best record in franchise history, as well as the best record in the WNBA.[25] Moore was named WNBA Rookie of the Month for July and August, and played in the WNBA All-Star Game.[26][27] Though Moore admitted that she struggled at times to adapt to the extraordinary level of talent in the WNBA, her play still earned her Rookie of the Year honors.[28]

During the playoffs, Moore was her team's second-leading scorer. She led her team in scoring once, in the final game of the Western Conference finals, when she poured in 21 points, including six three-pointers.[29] In October 2011, Maya became only the second player in league history to win Rookie of the Year honors and a WNBA championship in the same year.[30][31]

2012[edit]Edit

In 2012, Moore helped the Lynx begin the season with a 10-0 run, the best start in WNBA history.[32] The Lynx went on to equal 2011's 27-7 mark, finishing as the top seed in the WNBA Playoffs for a second straight year. The Lynx advanced to the 2012 WNBA Finals, for the second straight season, but fell to the Indiana Fever.

2013[edit]Edit

2013 was the best season of Moore's young career. She led the Lynx in points, and became the first player in WNBA history to lead the league in both three-point field goals and three-point shooting percentage.[33]Moore was twice selected WNBA Western Conference Player of the Month, and three times selected WNBA Western Conference Player of the Week. Meanwhile, the Lynx once again had the best record in the WNBA, finishing 26-8.

The Lynx swept through the playoffs, winning their second WNBA championship. Moore was named WNBA Finals MVP, leading her team in scoring two of the three games in the Finals.

Overseas career[edit]Edit

Moore signed with Ros Casares Valencia of Euroleague Women for the 2011–2012 season. She joined the team late due to her title run with the Lynx and played the last 10 games, helping them to win the championship in her Euroleague rookie season.[34]

After Ros Casares ceased operation, Moore signed with the Chinese professional team Shanxi Xing Rui Flame.[35] She recorded 60 points, 13 rebounds, 6 blocks and 5 steals against Yunnan, and averaged a double-double and a staggering 45.5 points in her first 5 games with the team.[36] Moore finished her first season averaging 41.5 points and 10.5 rebounds per game, leading the Flame to a championship in their first year at the top level in Chinese women's basketball.[37]

In Moore's second year with Shanxi, she again took her team to the finals, averaging 43.3 points per game in a 3-1 series win over Beijing. It was Moore's fifth professional championship in three years.[38]

Personal life[edit]Edit

Moore is a Christian. More has spoken about her faith saying, "Even though I’ve got a lot of awards and honors, it’s nothing compared to what the Lord has done to my heart and what He’s done for the world" and "I’m grateful to have the platform of an elite student-athlete and professional basketball player, and I want to do His will with my life."[39][40]

On October 28, 2013, Moore was featured as Betty Lou in "Uncle Drew: Chapter 3"[41] of the Pepsi Max series of advertisements written and directed by Kyrie Irving. She is the first WNBA player to be a part of the series and alongside 'Lights' played by Nate Robinson and 'Uncle Drew' played by Irving, they hustle a courtyard of young players at Seward Park in ChicagoIllinois.

Awards and honors[edit]Edit

  • She was named to the U.S. U-18 National Team in 2006, and helped that team qualify for the 2007 U19 World Championships in Bratislava, Slovakia.
  • In 2008, she became the first freshman in Big East Basketball history (men or women) to be named as the Big East Player of the Year.
  • Through Moore's two seasons at UConn, Moore had only 3 games where she didn't reach double digits. Those games are a 7-point performance vs. Pittsburgh on March 10, 2008, 7 points vs. Rutgers on April 1, 2008 and 8 points vs. Villanova on February 24, 2009.
  • Moore also broke the UConn single-season record for most points as a freshman (678) breaking the mark set by Svetlana Abrosimova, who had 538 in 1997–98.
  • Scored her 1,000th career point on January 20, 2009 (in just her 55th game at UConn) at the XL Center in Hartford, Connecticut while scoring 40 points over the Syracuse Orange. The previous UConn record for the least games needed to reach 1,000 points was 63 by Svetlana Abrosimova.
  • Maya Moore becomes UConn's all-time single-season scoring leader with 712 points,[42] ends season with 754 points[43]
  • Moore finished the 2009–10 season with 736 points, the second most points scored in a season by a UConn player only to herself (754 pts in 2008–09). In addition, this brings her career total to 2,168 points, 178 short of the UConn record of 2,346 points held by her teammate Tina Charles.
  • Moore was named the co-winner of the Honda-Broderick Cup (along with Megan Hodge from Penn State), awarded to the Collegiate Woman Athlete of the Year. The criteria include "outstanding athletic achievement but also team contributions, scholastics and community involvement".[44][45]
  • Moore won the 2010 ESPY Award for Best Female College Athlete.[46]
  • Moore was selected to play in a basketball game organized by President Barack Obama to entertain wounded troops. The players invited included some current and former stars: LeBron JamesDwyane Wade,Carmelo AnthonyBill Russell and Magic Johnson.[47][48]
  • Moore scored a career-high 41 points while adding 10 rebounds, 3 assists, 1 steal, and 3 blocks in UConn's historic 89th consecutive victory on Dec. 21, 2010 against 22/22 Florida State.
  • In March 2011, Moore earned All-American honors, becoming the second four-time All-American women's basketball player.
  • In April 2011, Moore was named Associated Press Player of the Year for the second time.

[5][6]Maya Moore accepting the Wade trophy for the best NCAA Division I player in the USA*Moore was selected Best Female Amateur Athlete by Connecticut Magazine for 2010

  • Won a gold medal with Team USA in the London Olympics

2007[edit]Edit

  • Naismith National Girls' High School Player of the Year
  • WBCA All-American[9]
  • WBCA High School Game MVP (Red team)[11]

2008[edit]Edit

2009[edit]Edit

[7][8]Maya Moore in Parade celebrating UConn undefeated National Championship*Big East Player of the Year[50]

2010[edit]Edit

2011[edit]Edit

2012[edit]Edit

2013[edit]Edit

WNBA career statistics[edit]Edit

Legend
  GP Games played   GS  Games started  MPG  Minutes per game  RPG  Rebounds per game  APG  Assists per game  SPG  Steals per game  BPG  Blocks per game
 PPG  Points per game  TO  Turnovers per game  FG%  Field-goal percentage  3P%  3-point field-goal percentage  FT%  Free-throw percentage Bold Career high League leader

Regular season[edit]Edit

Postseason[edit]Edit

Other statistics[edit]Edit

High school stats[edit]Edit

Season Games PPG RPG SPG
2004–05 32 19.4 8.6 2.8
2005–06 32 23.2 11.3 5.4

High school totals[edit]Edit

Number of Seasons Games PPG RPG SPG
4 128 19.3 8.6 3.5

University of Connecticut statistics[edit]Edit

Maya Moore Statistics[73][74] at University of Connecticut
Year G FG FGA PCT 3FG 3FGA PCT FT FTA PCT REB AVG A TO B S MIN PTS AVG
2007–08 38 275 506 0.543 73 174 0.420 55 74 0.743 290 7.6 116 80 59 63 1121 678 17.8
2008–09 39 284 545 0.521 90 226 0.398 96 123 0.780 348 8.9 127 61 59 76 1209 754 19.3
2009–10 39 279 542 0.515 80 192 0.417 98 124 0.790 325 8.3 150 75 40 82 1098 736 18.9
2010–11 38 333 636 0.524 68 177 0.384 134 159 0.843 313 8.2 151 85 46 89 1255 868 22.8
Totals 154 1171 2229 0.525 311 769 0.404 383 480 0.798 1276 8.3 544 301 204 310 4683 3036 19.7
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