With a new system in place, Taurean Prince had to change not only his role but his mindset coming into the season.
Prince averaged 11.4 points per game, 3.8 rebounds and 2.0 assists for the Atlanta Hawks.
Coming into the season, Prince was thought around the fan base as the go-to scorer for the Hawks. He had a strong end of the season the previous year, and it was evident he’d take a big step in 2019. Lloyd Pierce became the new coach and everything from there changed. In the first couple of games of the season, it seemed like the offense would run through Prince. Pierce was more about ball movement and pace.
With ball movement comes passing the ball, something he had to do a better job of early. There were times where he would elect to find his shot rather than finding his teammates. The possession usually ended with him taking a bad shot in isolation. Even though he shot a career-best 39 percent from three, he still had to evolve his game to fit in with the team’s system.
Prince was injured during the season and missed a couple of games. When he came back, he was a different player. He began to buy into the system, and he looked more willing to pass. This opened the Hawks offense up, and helped Prince thrive more than before. The Hawks were rumored to be shopping Prince around the trade deadline. That didn’t stop him from growing as a player.
Decision to make
The Hawks have a decision to make on Prince this offseason as he enters his fourth and final year of his rookie contract. Depending on what they do in free agency and the draft will decide which route they want to go. Prince showed his value this season as a 3-point shooter and could be a starter or come off the bench to help the team. Either way, this season showed that he’s able to adapt and contribute.
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