Archive for the ‘Minnesota Lynx’ Category

Maya Moore wins league MVP award

Thursday, August 21st, 2014

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /home/langfellow/mnscore.com/blog/wp-includes/formatting.php on line 82

NEW YORK, Aug. 21, 2014 - Maya Moore of the Minnesota Lynx has been named the 2014 WNBA Most Valuable Player the WNBA announced today. Moore received 371 points (including 35 first-place votes) from a national panel of 38 sportswriters and broadcasters.The press conference for the 2014 WNBA Most Valuable Player will take places tonight at 6:15 p.m. CT at Target Center in Minneapolis.

For Moore, the reigning MVP of the WNBA Finals and the league’s 2011 Rookie of the Year, this is the first regular-season MVP honor of her career. The University of Connecticut product and two-time WNBA champion finished as the runner-up to Candace Parker in MVP voting a year ago and finished fourth behind winner Tina Charles in 2012.

Phoenix Mercury guard Diana Taurasi finished second in the voting with 242 points (two first-place votes) and Atlanta Dream guard/forward Angel McCoughtry finished third with 112 points. Rounding out the top five vote-getters were Los Angeles Sparks forward/center Candace Parker (91 points) and Mercury center Brittney Griner (67 points, one first-place vote), who finished fourth and fifth, respectively.

This season, Moore guided the Lynx to a 25-9 record and the Western Conference’s No. 2 seed for the playoffs, despite the club being without injured All-Stars Rebekkah Brunson and Seimone Augustus for 23 and 10 games, respectively.

For the regular season, Moore played in all 34 games and paced the league in scoring (23.9 ppg), the third-highest average in WNBA history behind the 25.3 ppg and 24.1 ppg by Diana Taurasi in 2006 and 2008, respectively.

The WNBA’s top draft pick in 2011, Moore opened the 2014 season by scoring 135 points over her first four outings, marking the most prolific four-game scoring stretch in WNBA history. With that effort, the fourth-year pro became the first player in league history to post four consecutive games of 30 or more points after pouring in 34 points at Washington; 33 vs. Connecticut; a then-career-high 38 at Tulsa; and 30 vs. New York. She went on to finish the regular season with a league-record 12 games of 30-plus points, topping the previous mark of 10 set by Diana Taurasi in 2008.

Moore had perhaps her best outing of the season in a 112-108 double-overtime win over the visiting Atlanta Dream on July 22. In the victory, Moore tallied a career-high 48 points, marking the second-highest single-game total in WNBA history. Four games later, in a 84-75 victory at Tulsa on Aug. 2, Moore posted 40 points to break the league record for the most 30-point games in a single season.

Moore also finished the season ranked atop the WNBA in made field goals (295) and was second in minutes (34.7 mpg) and free throws made (160). Moore placed eighth in rebounding (8.1 rpg), tied for third in three-point field goals made (62), fourth in free throw percentage (.884, 160-of-181), tied for fourth in steals (1.88 spg), sixth in double-doubles (10), and 20th in assists (3.4 apg). In addition to leading her club in scoring, Moore placed second on the Lynx in rebounding and assists, and third in blocks (0.82 bpg).

Moore earned three of the four Western Conference Player of the Month awards and was named the conference’s Player of the Week five times, becoming the first player in league history to win Player of the Week honors in four consecutive weeks.

Players were awarded 10 points for each first-place vote, seven points for each second-place vote, five for third, three for fourth and one for each fifth-place vote received.

In honor of being named the WNBA Most Valuable Player, Moore will receive $15,000 and a specially-designed trophy.

Below are the voting results of the 2014 WNBA Most Valuable Player presented by Samsung and a list of past recipients:

2014 WNBA MOST VALUABLE PLAYER  VOTING RESULTS

Points Player Team

371 Maya Moore Minnesota Lynx

242 Diana Taurasi Phoenix Mercury

112 Angel McCoughtry Atlanta Dream

91 Candace Parker Los Angeles Sparks

67 Brittney Griner Phoenix Mercury

ALL-TIME WNBA MOST VALUABLE PLAYER  WINNERS

Year Player Team

2014 Maya Moore Minnesota Lynx

2013 Candace Parker Los Angeles Sparks

2012 Tina Charles Connecticut Sun

2011 Tamika Catchings Indiana Fever

2010 Lauren Jackson Seattle Storm

2009 Diana Taurasi Phoenix Mercury

2008 Candace Parker Los Angeles Sparks

2007 Lauren Jackson Seattle Storm

2006 Lisa Leslie Los Angeles Sparks

2005 Sheryl Swoopes Houston Comets

2004 Lisa Leslie Los Angeles Sparks

2003 Lauren Jackson Seattle Storm

2002 Sheryl Swoopes Houston Comets

2001 Lisa Leslie Los Angeles Sparks

2000 Sheryl Swoopes Houston Comets

1999 Yolanda Griffith Sacramento Monarchs

1998 Cynthia Cooper Houston Comets

1997 Cynthia Cooper Houston Comets

Lynx’ Maya Moore named Player of the Month for August

Wednesday, August 20th, 2014

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /home/langfellow/mnscore.com/blog/wp-includes/formatting.php on line 82

MINNEAPOLIS/ST. PAUL - The WNBA today named Minnesota Lynx forward Maya Moore its Western Conference Player of the Month presented by Samsung for the month of August. This is the third Western Conference Player of the Month presented by Samsung award for Moore this season, second consecutive and fifth in the past six, having also been honored in both August and September of 2013. The award marks the eighth time a Lynx player has been named Player of the Month, with Lindsay Whalen (August 2011), Seimone Augustus (July 2011) and Rebekkah Brunson (June 2011) also having previously received the award. After being named Player of the Week on August 4, Moore has now received eight Player of the Week/Player of the Month awards this season.

Moore averaged 23.0 ppg, 7.4 rpg and 3.1 apg in seven games in August, helping Minnesota clinch the second seed in the Western Conference playoffs. Her month started off with a 40 point performance in a win over Tulsa on August 2, becoming the third player in WNBA history to record multiple 40+ point games in a season (Diana Taurasi- 2006, Katie Smith- 2001). Moore continued her strong play with 30 points in a loss to Phoenix on August 9. The output was Moore’s WNBA-record 12th 30+ point game of the season. The UConn product ended the regular season on a high note in a win against Tulsa, scoring a team-high 19 points and pulling down a game-high 12 rebounds. The win made Minnesota the first franchise in WNBA history to record four-consecutive 25+ win seasons.

Highlights from Moore’s month include:
•August 2 at Tulsa: Scored 40 points on 14-of-22 shooting, including 4-of-7 from three-point range. Grabbed six rebounds and dished out five assists in a team-high 35 minutes. Became the third player in WNBA history with multiple 40+ point games in a season.
•August 9 at Phoenix: Registered her 12th 30+ point game of the season with a 30 point performance against the Mercury. Added six rebounds, two steals and two blocks in 37 minutes of play.
•August 16 vs. Tulsa: Recorded her 10th double-double of the season with 19 points and 12 rebounds in the win over the Shock. Shot 6-of-12 from the field and hit 7-of-8 free throws.Indiana Fever forward Tamika Catchings was named Eastern Conference Player of the Month presented by Samsung for the month of July. Catchings averaged 16.7 points and 6.3 rebounds per game in August.

Moore and the Lynx just wrapped up their 2014 regular season with a 25-9 record. The leading vote-getter for the 2014 Boost Mobile WNBA All-Star Game, Moore played and started all 34 games for the Lynx and led the WNBA in scoring, averaging 23.9 points per game. Moore also finished eighth in rebounding (8.1 rpg), 13th in field goal percentage (48.1%), fourth in free-throw percentage (88.4%), tied for fourth in steals (1.88 spg) and second in minutes (34.7 mpg). Moore and the Lynx open up the 2014 Western Conference Semifinals at home against the San Antonio Stars on Thursday, August 21.

Lynx Forward Maya Moore Named Western Conference Player of the Month

Tuesday, August 5th, 2014

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /home/langfellow/mnscore.com/blog/wp-includes/formatting.php on line 82

MINNEAPOLIS/ST. PAUL - The WNBA today named Minnesota Lynx forward Maya Moore its Western Conference Player of the Month presented by Samsung for the month of July. This is the second Western Conference Player of the Month award presented by Samsung for Moore this season (May) and fourth in the past five, having also been honored in both August and September of 2013. The award marks the seventh time a Lynx player has been named Player of the Month, with Lindsay Whalen (August 2011), Seimone Augustus (July 2011) and Rebekkah Brunson (June 2011) also having previously received the award. After being named Player of the Week on Monday (Aug. 4), Moore has now received seven Player of the Week/Player of the Month awards this season.

Moore averaged 26.4 ppg, 8.6 rpg and 3.6 apg for the month, helping Minnesota compile a 9-1 record. She garnered national attention with a club-record 48 points in the 112-108 double-OT win vs. Atlanta on July 22. The point total eclipsed Katie Smith’s previous Lynx mark of 46 (set at Los Angeles on July 8, 2001) and is the 2nd-highest total in WNBA history behind Riquna Williams’ 51-point outburst for Tulsa last Sept. 8 at San Antonio. It was also her 10th 30+ point game of the year, equaling Diana Taurasi’s WNBA single-season record in that category set in 2008. Moore scored 20+ points eight times and 30+ points on four occasions, and also collected three point/rebound double-doubles in the month.

Highlights from Moore’s month include:
•July 10 at Tulsa: Scored 33 points and pulled down 11 rebounds for her seventh double-double of the season. Hit 12-of-21 shots from the field and all eight free throw attempts.
•July 22 vs. Atlanta: Scored a franchise-record 48 points in a 112-108 2OT win over the Dream. Hit a club-record-tying seven three-pointers and grabbed 10 rebounds.
•July 31 vs. Phoenix: Registered a game-high 20 points with nine rebounds and four steals in Minnesota’s 75-67 win, snapping the Mercury’s 16-game winning streak.New York Liberty forward Tina Charles was named Eastern Conference Player of the Month presented by Samsung for July. Charles averaged 21.1 points and 11.2 rebounds in the month.

Now in her fourth WNBA season, Moore leads the WNBA in scoring (24.7 ppg) and minutes (35.2 mpg), and ranks 8th in rebounding (8.2 rpg), 15th in field goal percentage (48.2%), 4th in three-pointers made (56), 2nd in free throws made (135) and 6th in steals (1.96 spg). Moore and the Lynx are in action on Tuesday, August 5 at Bankers Life Fieldhouse as they take on the Indiana Fever. Tipoff is scheduled for 6:00 p.m. CDT.

Lynx’ Maya Moore named WNBA Western Conference Player of the Week

Monday, July 21st, 2014

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /home/langfellow/mnscore.com/blog/wp-includes/formatting.php on line 82

MINNEAPOLIS/ST. PAUL - The WNBA today named Minnesota Lynx forward Maya Moore its Western Conference Player of the Week for games played Monday, July 14 through Sunday, July 20. The Player of the Week award is Moore’s second consecutive, third this season and eighth of her career.

In Minnesota’s lone game this week heading into the All-Star break, Moore poured in a game-high 32 points in a 93-82 Lynx victory over the Tulsa Shock on July 16. It marked the ninth 30+ point performance of the season for the Moore, tying Lauren Jackson (2007) for the 2nd-highest single-season total in WNBA history. Moore shot 10-for-18 from the field and set career highs for free throws made and attempted, going 11-for-13 from the charity stripe. 12 of Moore’s 32 points came in the 4th quarter, helping stave off a Shock comeback bid. The 2013 WNBA Finals MVP added nine rebounds, five assists and two steals in helping the Lynx win their 17th game of the year.

This season Moore leads the league in scoring and minutes played, averaging 24.1 points and 35 minutes per game. She also ranks 5th in steals (2.00 spg), 6th in free throw accuracy (87.7%), 8th in rebounds (8.3 rpg), 14th in blocks (0.87 bpg) and 15th in field goal accuracy (48.6%).

Indiana’s Tamika Catchings was named the Eastern Conference Player of the Week.

The Lynx are 17-6 heading into the post All-Star Game portion of the season and sit in second in the Western Conference standings behind Phoenix.

Minnesota will host the Atlanta Dream at the Target Center on Tuesday, July 22 in a rematch of the 2013 WNBA Finals.

Q&A with Lynx Superstar Maya Moore

Wednesday, July 16th, 2014

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /home/langfellow/mnscore.com/blog/wp-includes/formatting.php on line 82

It’s hard to relate to Maya Moore.  Widely regarded as the best women’s baller in the world, Moore has won multiple championships at the high school, collegiate and professional levels along with an Olympic gold medal. She’s got individual honors covered too, the 4th year forward is a 3-time All Star, 2011 Rookie of the Year and 2013 WNBA Finals MVP. And, after turning 25 last month, she can even rent a car.

What’s left? Intrigued, I sat down with the Lynx superstar after Tuesday’s practice.

DZ: Who is the most interesting person you met on Sunday at the Celebrity and Legends Softball Game?

MOORE: (pauses) We had a couple of wounded warriors that were out there just showing off their skills. It was really impressive. My teammate (Greg Reynolds), who has one healthy arm was out there swinging, making hits single handed; making catches out in centerfield, throwing his glove off and catching the ball midair and throwing it. It was so impressive to see his hustle and see his resilience out there. It gave a lot of us energy and momentum.

DZ: Seimone (Augustus) has been out awhile, how does that change your role with the team?

MOORE: Just stepping up - leadership and vocally. Making sure I make solid decisions with the ball like she would do and just stepping up my defensive intensity to guard some of the two guards she would be guarding sometimes. Monica (Wright) has also stepped in and taken over the energy defensively for us which has been a good addition - getting her out there more. I want to be more efficient on the offensive end and just being tough and competitive.

DZ: You personally and this team have had a lot of success in past years, what do you do to keep that edge and stay hungry?

MOORE: I think it starts with our leadership - our coaching staff and the captains on this team. The attitude of our overall group is that we want to make the most out of everyday. We enjoy each other, we realize how great of an opportunity that we have with the people we have in this program. We want to push each other to the edge every day to try to get better and not leave anything uncovered. When we come in with that attitude everyday, it forces us to get better and that shows on the court.

DZ: You personally have won at pretty much every level and won everything - pretty much - that there is to win…

MOORE: Except for this year’s championship!

DZ: …what was the most difficult time of your career, the most adversity you faced?

MOORE: Every year coming off of a championship loss is very tough. I’ve lost at every level except the Olympic level - I’ve just started my Olympic journey. In high school, coming off of our state championship loss my freshman year; my freshman year in college (and) my senior year in college, losing in the Final Four; losing in the (WNBA) Finals in 2012. Every few years, it’s a heart breaking loss and it just fuels me and the teams that I am on to be more determined when we get that opportunity again.

Overall, the everyday grind of being great and striving for excellence. It’s hard to really say this day or this moment, but just the overall - being consistently great and striving to be excellent is very hard to do. You want to take days off or take a shortcut, but just pushing myself and trying to push my teammates and them doing the same for me. Everyday going the extra mile, embrace the hardness of everyday is a grind.

DZ: Is that something that comes from inside you or do you feed off of other people; how does that work?

MOORE: It’s a combination. You definitely need help. Having that external encouragement and competition, if you use it right, can propel you to be better. There is no doubt that if you want to be absolutely great, you have to have that internal “want to” to be great, to embrace the hard aspects of the process. It’s hard to really pinpoint why certain people have it more than others, but I absolutely know that everyday I wake up it’s a gift that I am…able to come out here and play with this awesome group…So I play with a grateful, hungry attitude when out competing and try to get the most out of everyday.

DZ: One last thing, when you do face tough times and adversity, what gets you through that?

MOORE: When you are faced with a challenge or failure or hard time or unexpected event, you can either handle it poorly and it can make you worse, set you back or you can embrace it and learn from it and try to overcome it and be better because of it. I am surrounding with players and people that want to be better and I try to do the same thing. I take a look at the situation, try to learn from it. I feel the feeling of frustration and sometimes, disappointment and wanting to be better, but you have to let it go and use it as fuel to help you be better the next time. Having someone to talk or to process through is great whether it’s a teammate or coach, so you feel like you are in it together with them. Being careful about placing blame, you have to be very careful about taking responsibility for your part and try to move forward and bouncing back. Especially on the court, you have to have a short memory and you have to move on from play-to-play-to-play and then after the game you can take a look at how you can get better.

DZ: I lied, one more thing: can you think of an instance when you did handle something poorly and what you learned from it?

MOORE: Yeah, sure. I can think of two examples. I don’t know if it’s a certain play or day, but in game when something bad happens - either you get a call you don’t agree with or you make a couple of mistakes in a row and you let that outward frustration show which affects your teammates. It can affect me; if I am trying to talk to an official to get him to change a call - I am not focusing on what I am supposed to be focused on (and) I let another moment or opportunity to slip. I am not thinking about the defensive possession that I need to be helping my teammate or doing a certain job and I miss it because I am thinking about the mistake or call I didn’t like or something like that.

After the game, letting your emotions lead you to bad eating choices or going somewhere you don’t need to be going instead of recovering the proper way. When you are mad or angry or frustrated it can lead into other poor decisions, so I try to be very careful when I am challenged…to step back and say “All right, this could get worse, how can I make sure I move this in the right direction and help my teammates?”