After being cored, Maya Moore has decided to sit the season out. This decision needs to be respected.
Maya Moore has decided to sit out the 2019 WNBA season. Any fan of the league will know this by now. There have been mixed responses to this. Some fans were outraged when it was first announced, surely this champion needs to double down on the Minnesota Lynx.
They have lost superstar point guard Lindsay Whalen to retirement and face the possibility of losing Rebekkah Brunson to concussion symptoms. The Lynx finished outside the top two for the first time in eight years last season. They needed their superstar to come back stronger this season to get them back where they belong.
However, then there is the other side of the coin. Maya Moore has been playing high level basketball year round from 2011 to 2015 before taking a couple of European/Chinese seasons off in 2016 and 17. She then played year round in 2018. The seasons she had “off” were spent preparing for the WNBA seasons.
Moore has basically been about basketball professionally since 2011. Before that Moore spent four years at college, which was pretty much about basketball as well. For 11 years, Moore life has been basketball, basketball and more basketball. Every season she has played, be it in America, Europe or China is longer than everyone elses because Moore has won championships everywhere. Last season it showed that this is a little much.
Moore was still able to average 18.0 points and 5.1 rebound per game. However it was her efficiency that was a little off. Moore shot the ball at 43.3 percent from the field and a relatively low 36.5 percent from deep. She made 66 3-pointers last season. She made 65 the previous two seasons. However, she took 23 more attempts last season than in 2017, 20 more tha 2016.
If you couple this drop in efficiency with 30 less assists per game, there is an issue. Moore the superstar started playing like Moore the mortal. She could have signed a contract with the Lynx for this season, played at a lower standard and just taken her money but that is not the Maya Moore style.
Moore wants to explore other parts of her life, basketball has dominated her life for more than 12 years. Now she wants to invest her time in members of her family and some ministry dreams. She has earned this right, no sports fan should harbour any ill will towards this sporting legend for feeling this way.
Moore has handled this matter with the professionalism which has been the trademark of her career. She has worked closely with the Lynx organisation, making sure they could make the moves they have in free agency to give them a good shot at next season without her as possible.
Moore has committed to the Lynx beyond next year, they have her locked up on contract. However, the issue for any WNBA who wants to see the best players playing in the best league in the world remains the same. If they were paid what they are worth, they would not have to travel the world year-round.
They would then be able to focus on the WNBA which would mean off seasons would be meaningful, rather than relocations. Am I upset that Maya Moore will not be playing in the WNBA? A little, she is awesome to watch. However, I respect her right to make a decision on her career, especially one which benefits her soul.
For full free agency coverage check out our 2019 free agency central.