Reeve is struck by how Moore’s one-on-one game has flourished. Assistant coach Jim Petersen said Moore is one of the greatest shot-makers he’s ever been around. Assistant Shelley Patterson compares Moore to former WNBA great Sheryl Swoopes in her ability to remain focused on the game, no matter what’s happening.
“It’s maturity,’’ teammate Seimone Augustus said. “I think she’s finally settled in. Before, maybe, she was pressing a little bit, trying to do too much offensively. Now you can see she’s in her groove. She knows when to take the shot, when to make the pass.’’
For Moore, her third season has brought her game to a critical mass. “I’ve found a good rhythm of where I’ll get my shots, the timing of our offense,’’ she said.
And her place in that offense. “She feels really comfortable,” Reeve said. “From year one to year two, you feel more comfortable. But in year three there is a different feeling. We’ve seen her evolve in two areas.”
The first is on defense, where Moore’s on-ball defensive skills have grown to equal her ability to jump passing lanes. The second is Moore’s play on offense in the open court. “And she has a comfort level, not only with her teammates, but with me,” Reeve said.
The next level
The Lynx secured the league’s top playoff seed for the third season in a row with a balanced attack. Point guard Lindsay Whalen, herself an MVP candidate, also had a career year. Moore, Whalen, Augustus and Rebekkah Brunson were all all-stars.
Reeve talked earlier this week about the hunger the team feels after losing to Indiana in last year’s finals. This time around the Lynx have both that hunger and better health.
“This year you can tell we’re more, what’s the word? Mature,” Augustus said. “We’ve been through the ups, which is winning the championship. And the downs, not being able to do it last year. Now we’re ready to go.’’
And Moore is ready to take yet another step.
“She has had such a great run here in a lot of different aspects,” Whalen said. “Understanding the game, how to get easy shots, how to get herself going. It’s just fun to be on her team.”