When the Minnesota Lynx visited the White House in June to be honored for winning the 2013 WNBA championship, Barack Obama, the noted basketball maven, admitted there was a player on the trip who already knew her way around the joint.
“Basically, there’s like a Maya Moore wing in the White House. When she comes, we’ve got all her stuff here. She’s got a toothbrush,” Obama said of Moore.
The president was right. It was already Moore’s fifth visit to the White House in her young career; two with UConn national champions, two with the Lynx, and one with the 2012 US Olympic team.
“It’s been such a blessing in my life to be a part of so many championship teams so close to each other,” Moore said after practice on Friday. “It’s humbling. It’s an honor to be able to engage with the president, who is such a basketball fan. I know he appreciates us [the female athlete] as role models for his own daughters.”
But in terms of recognition outside of Washington, Moore’s image crossed a very important line when it peered out from under her hoodie in the Jordan Brand commercial honoring Derek Jeter that debuted during the All-Star Game.
There she was, with some of the biggest names in sports and entertainment, tipping her metaphorical cap to the Yankees captain.
“One of the cool things about being a professional athlete is being to participate in projects like that and help support and celebrate one of the greatest athletes in sports,” Moore said. “It was a honor to be part of it and hopefully a lot of good things can come out of for all involved.”
It was an important next step for a player who has already had major commercial exposure.
“How busy am I these days? Extremely,” Moore said. “I’m in a position nowadays when I have to practice saying no [to opportunities]. There are so many things that I can be doing that I simply don’t have the time to do. My first priority is my team and my teammates.”
The Lynx will be at the Mohegan Sun Arena Sunday to play the Connecticut Sun. The game starts at 3 p.m.