Mystics Season Rewind: Rui Machida

We are diving into the 2022 season, remembering moments from our shifty rookie from Japan, in this Mystics Season Rewind – Rui Machida Edition

Machida’s 2022 Season Recap

On April 25, Mystics Head Coach & General Manager Mike Thibault held a press conference to introduce Rui Machida as the newest member of the team. Rui had a strong on-court presence in the third game of the season, scoring 9 points in win against the Las Vegas Aces. With Natasha Cloud out in COVID protocols, Rui started the game and challenged the Aces defense by dishing out 4 assists. Just a few days later continued her prowess with another 7 assists against Dallas.

Rui had several moments where she shined this season, and her assists were a big part of her success on the court. She averaged 2.6 assists per game and 31.0% from the field. Rui was all over the floor and even racked up 4 or more rebounds in a few games this season. In our end of the season press release, Rui stated “Every player in the WNBA is top notch and I understand why it’s the best league in the world. I gained a valuable experience.” Even against the best players in the world, Rui delivered all season long to help the Mystics make it to the WNBA Playoffs.


Rui Machida Off-the-Court

While here in Washington D.C., Machida shared her Japanese culture with the team and the Mystics family. Off the court, Rui was welcomed into the home of Japanese Ambassador Tomita. During her visit, Rui gifted her Mystics’ Explorer jersey to the Ambassador as a symbol of good faith and to thank the embassy for their support. Rui represented her country and the Mystics in an effort to share her experiences playing basketball in the WNBA. Through her massive international following Rui was able to introduce the Mystics to a whole new fanbase across the globe. Several fans even flew all the way from Japan to see her play in the best league in women’s basketball.

In addition to introducing Japanese fans to the Mystics, Rui continued to share her county’s history and traditions with her new fans here in D.C. During the first Japanese Heritage Game at Entertainment & Sports Arena, we introduced fans to traditions like the Japanese Wishing Wall and brought the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games torch for a photo op. Rui’s impact on the city has extended beyond the game of basketball and who knows what she has in store next.

Rui’s Best Moments of the Season

  • Against the Chicago Sky, Rui dished out a career-high, 9 assists in 21 mins of play.

  • Rui Machida was able to connect with her teammate on a personal level by trying different American snacks suggested by her teammates.

  • During the season, Rui had a chance to visit the Japanese Ambassador’s home where she met the Ambassador Tomita.

  • Rui helped host and inspire the Washington Mystics’ first Japanese Heritage Game.