The news came early in the offseason that Epiphanny Prince had suffered a knee injury while playing for her international club team, Dynamo Kursk, in the Russian Premier League last winter. The timetable for returning to action from an ACL tear is always determined on a case-by-case basis, but the estimates left some question about whether Prince would be able to return to action for the 2016 season.
But knowing Piph’s determination and dedication, there was definitely hope that she would see the court in 2016, and she did exactly that, making her season debut in the first game after the Olympic break at San Antonio on Aug. 26.
Prince was coming off her first season with the Liberty, and arguably her best as a pro, a year that saw her receive All-WNBA Second Team accolades for the 1st time in her career. This came despite her missing the first 10 games of the season to compete internationally. She ended up scoring 15.0 ppg with 3.4 assists and 1.9 steals per contest.
Unfortunately, seeing what she could accomplish with a full season teaming up with Tina Charles and playing under Bill Laimbeer was a bit delayed. Prince still worked her way back into the lineup, and immediately shook the rust off as New York made its push towards the postseason.
She scored 5 points in 7 minutes of action in her debut at San Antonio, and followed that up with 7 points in her next outing at Indiana, sinking a 3-pointer in the process. It was her 5th game back where Prince really broke out, posting double figures for the first time since her injury, nailing 3-of-4 buckets from beyond the arc to score 13 points with 3 rebounds and an assist.
By the time the playoffs arrived, Prince was looking like the high-scoring sharp shooter New Yorkers had come to know, scoring an efficient 12 points with a pair of treys in the 2nd Round game against the Mercury.
Now, Liberty fans can really get excited to see what a fully healthy Prince is capable of, playing in her home town with a coach and teammates she is now accustomed to.
Aug. 26 @ San Antonio
Made her season debut after missing the first 26 games of the season while recovering from offseason knee surgery, scoring 5 points off the bench
Sept. 1 @ Indiana
Played in consecutive games, logging 15 minutes to finish with 7 points, hitting her first 3-pointer of the season
Sept. 9 vs. Connecticut
Scored in double figures for the first time since offseason surgery, shooting 3-of-4 from 3-point range to finish with 13 points with 3 rebounds
On August 19 the Liberty removed guard Epiphanny Prince from the temporarily suspended list, and activated her as she returned to practice for the first time this season after suffering a torn ACL in Nov. 2015 while competing for her international club Dynamo Kursk in the Russian Premier League. Prince, a Brooklyn native who is in her second season with the Liberty, was a Second-Team All-WNBA Player last season when she averaged 15.0 ppg.
PRINCE BACK IN ACTION
Guard Epiphanny Prince made her 2016 Liberty debut in New York’s 84-77 win at San Antonio on August 26, after she missed the first 26 games of the season while she recovered from a knee injury suffered in November 2015. Prince played seven minutes, scoring five points with an assist and a steal, shooting 2-of-3 from the field and also stepping up to sink a technical free throw.
THAT’S MORE LIKE IT
Guard Epiphanny Prince turned in her best performance since coming back from offseason knee surgery in the Liberty’s 89-82 win over the Sun on Sept. 9, as she scored in double figures for the first time, finishing with 13 points while hitting her first three 3-point attempts and getting to the line four times. Prince also played a season-high 20 minutes.