Transition Game: Epiphanny Prince Finding Her Sweet Spot at Shooting Guard

Epiphanny Prince, the Chicago Sky’s breakout second year player, is spending the 2011 season in a new role, one more familiar to the explosive scorer from Rutgers University.

As the number four selection in the 2010 WNBA Draft, Prince was selected by the Sky to play the point. Admittedly for Prince, it was a tough adjustment.

“The hardest part for me was going from shooting guard to a point guard,” said Prince. “I have played the two guard all of my life and my rookie year was the first time I had to play the point.”

Prince split time at the position with Dominique Canty last season, and by most rookie standards, she exceeded the curve. She finished the season playing in all 34 games, finished third on the team in scoring, second in steals and second in assists. Her 56 steals set a sky rookie record. She also had the second best all-time Sky rookie marks in field goals made, three-pointers, assists and points.

Looking back, said Prince, “the transition was not as difficult as I expected [because] I like playing in Chicago.”

However, with the drafting of Gonzaga point guard Courtney Vandersloot, Prince can now move back to her natural two guard position. While she is eager to resume a more comfortable spot on the floor, she is aware of the tests Vandersloot is sure to face since it was only last year that Prince was in her shoes.

“Courtney’s a great point guard,” said Prince. “We have been talking a lot and playing on the same teams in practices so we know each other’s game and what each of us are capable of. Both of us have the same mentality when it comes to getting things done and doing what the coach wants us to do.”

While overseas the past two seasons, first for Botaş Sporthe in Turkey and then for Spartak Moscow Region in Russia under new Sky Head Coach Pokey Chatman, Prince played alongside many WNBA stars. Much of her success early in 2011 can be attributed to the quality of competition she faces all year round.

“I played in Russia and I did a decent job over there. I had the opportunity to play with so many veterans and All-Star players that were teaching me and giving me pointers.”

One of those players was Sue Bird of the Seattle Storm, who Prince formed a successful backcourt with for Spartak. Comparisons have already been made between the playing styles of Bird and Vandersloot, which could prove fortuitous for the Sky.

In the end, while she is happy to be back at shooting guard, Prince is willing to do whatever Chatman wants her to do to help her team win.

“I just want to do whatever Coach Chatman needs from me. If she needs me to score, I’ll score. If she needs me to play defense, I’ll play defense. Just staying open-minded and helping the team anyway that I can is some of the goals I’ve set for myself.”