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A blog on UConn women's basketball.

Friday, June 01, 2012

Maya Moore not focused on issues with her European team

Anybody who has spent even a few minutes with former UConn star Maya Moore knows she tends to focus on the talk at hand.

So it shouldn't come as a surprise that Moore has been more concerned with the goings on with her WNBA team than the news that the European team she played for during the winter has folded.

There were some rumors of Moore landing in Galatasaray in Turkey to replace Diana Taurasi (who is headed to Russia to play for UMMC Ekaterinburg) but Moore said nothing is official yet.

What is known is that Ros Casares, based in Valencia, Spain will not be defending their EuroLeague title. Financial problems let Ros Casares to release its players and withdraw from the EuroLeague.

"You never want a team to fold but the club had to do what they had to do," Moore said before Friday's game between the Minnestoa Lynx and Connecticut Sun.. "I was just focused on here, I don't try to focus too much on things that are too far away. I have some good people working for me and I will be fine and everybody will.

"I am still working on some things so we'll see."

Staying on the subject of the European season, there have been internet reports mentioning that former UConn star and current Connecticut Sun guard Renee Montgomery will join fellow WNBAers DeWanna Bonner and Kelly Miller as part of a revamped Nadezhda Orenburg (Russia) squad. It's not exactly new news in terms of the Montgomery signing.

"I signed pretty early," Montgomery said. "I was already talking about where I signed towards the end of the overseas season this year. It is a great organization, it is Russia so that always speaks for itself.
You always want to be on a good program that can go far, it is the EuroLeague so it is going to be in a great
league. I want to be on a good team that can win a championship. I haven't won a championship
professionally yet so my goal is to end better (than last season)."

Kalana Greene said she is unsure about which team, if any, she will be playing for in the winter.

Speaking of Greene, she will be reunited with her UConn coach Geno Auriemma to shoot an instructional video for the USOC. There are some regulations that would prevent any of Auriemma's current players from being used and it needed to be somebody familiar with Auriemma and his system.

"When the Godfather asks for a favor, I have to give it to him," Greene said with a laugh. "I can't deny his favor because he might not ask again. He needed some help doing a video and they needed a player who knows his system, it would make it pretty easy he wouldn'r have to teach me anything. This is my international marketing experience.

"He is a good guy and every time I see him, everytime I talk to him I get something from him just to spend time with him. He is a great guy, anything I can ever do to for him I will always do."

Finally a could of items from the interview with Moore.

I asked her for her reaction to Tina Charles' philanthropic side emerging as she is funding a school in Mali.

"Living with her for a couple of years I know she has a big heart. When she sees an injustice, she is one
of those people who wants to fix it. I am glad she is able to and I know she is getting so much joy out of
it particularly of where we have come from and use it the right way. It is just the beginning for her. We
are kind of early on in our careers and we are finally getting to contribute and impact in ways that are
close to our heart. I am sure there is going to be more to come."
Finally, before I head out to the court for the Sun/Lynx game, I asked Moore about what advice she would give to UConn incoming freshman Breanna Stewart who is the most hyped soon to be freshman for the Huskies since Moore's arrival.

"Just stay focused, work as hard as you can and compete. It is really a great atmosphere for competitors.
If she is willing to do the work that the coaches are telling her to do, it is going to be some great
things from that group. I am excited to watch it. It is a really special time in terms of having some
maturity form the younger players that I played with now that they are getting older, they have had some
struggles and ups and downs. They can take that into this season and I think it is a good time for them to
have a good year."

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