Last Friday, before all-world basketball phenom Maya Moore’s first game in China, I wrote:
Let’s play a game: how many points will Maya Moore score in her WCBA debut tomorrow for Shanxi Xingrui Flame vs. Bayi? I’m going to set the over/under at 59.5.
She did not score 60 that game, topping out at 37. The next game, she only scored 34. But last night, against Yunnan, she decided it was time:
That’s 60 points plus 13 rebounds, 2 assists, 5 steals and 6 blocks, as her Shanxi Flame defeated Yunnan 93-88 in overtime. Here’s the box score. The next highest-scorer on Shanxi was Zhang Wei, with 10.
We’d make a comparison with JR Smith, who also scored 60 this past season in China, but Moore is on a somewhat different pedestal. Since joining the team, Shanxi has not lost. It’s funny because before Moore joined, Shanxi hadn’t won. The Flame are 3-2 on the young season, with Moore averaging 43.7 points, 15.3 rebounds, 4.3 steals and 2.7 blocks.
“This is simply the female version of [LeBron] James,” Zhang Xuewen, who plays on Shanxi’s CBA team, said after Moore’s debut last week. “Forget about it, we should all stop playing, might as well retire.” At the very least, opposing coaches should give her the Steph Curry-at-Davidson treatment and have two defenders shadow her at all times.
Meanwhile, Australian Liz Cambage continued her dominance as well, scoring 41 points to lead her team, Zhejiang, to another win. That team is now 4-1, losing only to defending champs Beijing this past Tuesday.
Zhejiang is scheduled to play Shanxi on December 8. If that game is not on national television here, the producers at CCTV should all just quit.