Four-time champion Maya Moore retires from WNBA | Inquirer Sports
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Four-time champion Maya Moore retires from WNBA

/ 05:17 PM January 17, 2023

 Maya Moore #23 of the Minnesota Lynx pumps up the crowd in the final minute of Game Five of the WNBA Finals against the Los Angeles Sparks on October 4, 2017 at Williams in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

FILE–Maya Moore #23 of the Minnesota Lynx on October 4, 2017 at Williams in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The Lynx defeated the Sparks 85-76 to win the championship. Hannah Foslien/Getty Images/AFP 

Maya Moore officially retired from the WNBA on Monday, making the announcement on “Good Morning America.”

“I think it’s time to put a close to the pro basketball life,” she said.

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Moore hasn’t played in the WNBA since 2018, when she announced plans to commit time to criminal justice reform.

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Moore entered the WNBA in 2011 as the No. 1 pick of the Minnesota Lynx on the heels of leading UConn to the national title. She captured the Rookie of the Year award and the first of four WNBA titles (2011, 2013, 2015, 2017). Minnesota appeared in the playoffs eight consecutive seasons with Moore on the roster.

An All-WNBA pick five consecutive seasons, Moore was league MVP in 2014 and a six-time All-Star with three All-Star MVP awards.

“It was a dream come true for me to play basketball at the highest level and help build the foundation for women’s basketball,” Moore said. “Ever since I was drafted in 2011, the state of Minnesota, Lynx organization and fan base welcomed me with open arms and supported me throughout my entire career. I will forever be grateful for Glen Taylor, Coach Reeve and the Lynx community for all of the support and am excited to continue this next chapter in my life.”

In 271 career games, Moore become the Lynx franchise leader in scoring average (18.4), 3-point field goals made (530) and steals (449), and finished second in total points scored (4,984), field goals made (1,782), assists (896) and blocks (176). She holds the single-season franchise record for points (812, 2014) and scoring average (23.9, 2014).

“We are immensely grateful for the eight incredible seasons Maya Moore gave to the WNBA and to fans of women’s basketball everywhere,” Commissioner Cathy Engelbert said in a statement on Monday.

“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. Her staunch advocacy for change to the criminal justice system through her ‘Win With Justice’ project elevated her impact to new heights, and her work has and will continue to inspire her fans around the world. We wish the best for Maya and her family in the future.”

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As part of her commitment to criminal justice reform, Moore lobbied for the release of Jonathan Irons from the Jefferson City correctional center in Missouri. After 23 1/2 years behind bars, Irons was vindicated of a conviction for murder and burglary that happened when he was 16 years old. A judge set Irons free, citing a fingerprint report that would’ve proved Irons’ innocence but was not turned over to his defense team.

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Moore and Irons are now married with a child, and have co-authored a book “Love and Justice.”

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