WNBA Great Maya Moore Retires From Basketball Officially: Four years after taking a break from basketball, Maya Moore decided it was time to retire.
The Minnesota Lynx star departed the WNBA in 2019 to work on Jonathan Irons’ 50-year sentence appeal, which resulted in Jonathan Irons’ release from jail in 2020. Soon after his release, Irons married Moore, and in February, the couple welcomed Jonathan Jr.
She made her retirement announcement on ABC’s “Good Morning America” on Monday. Moore had previously expressed a lack of commitment to returning to the basketball game, but she recently told The Associated Press that it was time to call it a career.
“Over the last year, it finally felt right just to close the chapter,” Moore said. “Talk about it in a celebratory way. … I’m excited to give clarity to the basketball world.”
Moore admitted that the thought of her son and husband missing her WNBA debut crossed her mind, but it did not influence her decision to continue playing.
Irons declared his support for Moore’s choice.
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“It was her decision, and you know it brewed from her heart,” he said. “I was gonna root for her whatever she chose to do. I’d been at the stadium yelling: ’Go, girl! Take that jump shot, win that championship!”
The 33-year-old Moore won two Olympic gold medals with USA Basketball, four WNBA championships with the Minnesota Lynx, and two NCAA championships with UConn.
“On behalf of the Minnesota Lynx organization, I want to congratulate Maya on an incredible basketball career,” Lynx coach and President of Basketball Operations Cheryl Reeve said. “We will always cherish her time in a Lynx uniform, and we wish her the best as she continues to pursue this next chapter of her life.”
As one of the few athletes to retire from his sport at the height of their career, Moore will be eligible for the Naismith Hall of Fame next year.
She was selected first overall by the Lynx in the 2011 draft and went on to represent Minnesota for eight seasons while averaging 18.4 points, 5.9 rebounds, and 1.7 steals. She also won the Rookie of the Year title. She was the only player in WNBA history to have four games with 40 or more points, winning league MVP honors in 2014.
“Her four WNBA championships, six All-Star selections, an MVP award, and a Finals MVP trophy are indicative of the type of rare, generational talent Maya brought to this league, but perhaps her greatest legacy will be what she accomplished beyond the game,” WNBA Commissioner Cathy Engelbert said.
When Moore retired from basketball, she launched the “Win With Justice” social justice initiative. This week, Moore and her husband’s book, “Love & Justice,” will also be released.
Moore remarked, “Writing and telling this narrative has been a real adventure. There are so many specifics, difficulties, and triumphs that are so essential to the human heart and relatable to everyone.
She had a vital role in the Lynx, becoming the first professional sports team to embrace social activism during her career openly. This began on July 9, 2016, when players wore black T-shirts that stated, “Change Starts With Us,” before a game. The fatal police shootings of Philando Castile in Minnesota and Alton Sterling in Louisiana earlier that week inspired their message.
“I hope people saw me as someone who gave all she had,” Moore said Monday, “but also somebody who looked beyond the craft that I pursued.”
During Moore’s tenure as the star among stars in a core that included Seimone Augustus, Lindsay Whalen, Rebekkah Brunson, and eventually Sylvia Fowles, the Lynx went 200-71 in the regular season 40-16 in the postseason.
She concluded her career as the Lynx franchise’s leader in scoring average, 3-point field goals made (530), and steals (449) while placing second overall in points scored (4,984), field goals made (1,782), assists (896), and blocks (109). (176).
I’m supporting #enditmovement. There are an estimated 40 million people trapped in slavery around the world today.
— Maya Moore (@MooreMaya) February 13, 2020
Glen Taylor, the Minnesota Timberwolves and Lynx owner, stated that Maya Moore “has permanently left a stamp on the state of Minnesota, the Minnesota Lynx team, and the hearts of Lynx fans everywhere.” “Maya has received much recognition; her bold leadership and talent laid the groundwork for the league’s most thrilling and historic championship run from 2011 to 2017. Even though Maya’s basketball career ends today, she will undoubtedly continue to impact the sport we all love.
In her time at UConn, Moore had a 150-4 record. The Husky’s 90-game winning streak, which was the longest until the school had a 111-game run a few years later, was greatly aided by the two-time AP Player of the Year.
“Maya has given this some thought, and I’m sure she didn’t make this choice lightly. You don’t move away from the love Maya had for the game, the way she played it, and the passion with which she played it casually. Coach Geno Auriemma of UConn stated, “I’m sure this was a tough choice for her and her family. She is very committed to the life and family she has created and the current causes, in my opinion, because she was able to make this choice. Keep yourself updated with all the latest news from our website Newswatchlist.com and get all the recent updates.