WNBA superstar Maya Moore's activism subject of ESPN documentary

·3 min read

It won’t take long for the world to find out more about newlyweds Maya Moore and Jonathan Irons.

ESPN Films is in production on a documentary project about WNBA superstar Moore, a four-time WNBA champion with the Minnesota Lynx, and her work to free Irons, a man who was wrongfully convicted and spent 23 years in jail. The announcement came shortly after Moore and Irons announced on "Good Morning America" they had married a few months ago.

Moore documentary on faith, justice

The documentary will dive into Moore’s “unwavering faith,” her connection with Irons, and how she stepped away from the WNBA prior to the 2019 season to pursue justice and activism. It will offer “a deep look at Moore’s commitment to criminal justice reform and the devoted pursuit of freedom for a man unjustly imprisoned.”

“I am so hopeful that this intimate look at our journey for justice will inspire all to believe that change & justice are possible,” Moore said in a release. “The heart of this story is that when we see & value the people suffering around us we can start to become the community we know we were meant to be. I’m more convinced than ever that love & sacrifice will lead us to the win for humanity.”

The feature will include never-before-seen footage and “uncommonly intimate verité.” Moore is a famously private person.

The project does not have a title yet. It is produced in partnership with Rock’n Robin Productions and Robin Roberts will executive produce. Rudy Valdez, an Emmy award-winning director for “The Sentence,” will direct.

Moore, Irons announce marriage

Maya Moore in a cameraphone.
A documentary about Maya Moore will include intimate footage from her work to free Jonathan Irons. (Tim Clayton/Corbis via Getty Images)

Irons, now 40, had been in jail since he was 16 and served 23 years of a 50-year murder sentence. His conviction was overturned with the help of Moore and in July he was released from prison. A judge ruled that prosecutors suppressed fingerprint evidence that would have been favorable to Irons’ defense.

The case became widely covered when Moore, 31, announced in 2019 she would step away from basketball for a bit and shortly later shared the story of Irons. She announced before the COVID-19 pandemic that she would also skip the 2020 season for the case and was taking her name out of consideration for the Tokyo Olympics.

During an interview with GMA’s Roberts, Moore said the two had married months ago and they shared how it came to be. They first met when Moore was 18, before she went on to a wildly successful basketball career.

Will Moore return to WNBA?

Moore told Roberts she would share in the spring news of her next step. The Lynx (14-8) clinched the No. 4 seed in the 2020 WNBA playoffs at IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida. They will play the Phoenix Mercury, winners of an unlikely buzzer-beater, on Thursday evening in the second round.

She was named the 2011 Rookie of the Year, the 2014 league MVP and is a six-time All-Star and five-time All-WNBA first-teamer. She also has two titles with UConn. If she were to return, the Lynx would be an immediate title favorite in 2021. Their roster already has the league’s all-time leading rebounder in Sylvia Fowles, the reigning Rookie of the Year in Napheesa Collier and the likely 2020 Rookie of the Year in Crystal Dangerfield.

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