You have reached your limit of free articles this month.

Enjoy unlimited access to myAJC.com

Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks.

GREAT REASONS TO SUBSCRIBE TODAY!

  • IN-DEPTH REPORTING
  • INTERACTIVE STORYTELLING
  • NEW TOPICS & COVERAGE
  • ePAPER
X

You have read of premium articles.

Get unlimited access to all of our breaking news, in-depth coverage and bonus content- exclusively for subscribers. Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks

X

Welcome to myAJC.com

This subscriber-only site gives you exclusive access to breaking news, in-depth coverage, exclusive interactives and bonus content.

You can read free articles of your choice a month that are only available on myAJC.com.

Prince not surprised by second chance at dream for best friend Austin


The dream to play professional basketball lives for Isaiah Austin.

That news did not come as a surprise to his best friend Taurean Prince. The Hawks rookie knew one day Austin would get his chance.

“He always said he was going to try to make a comeback,” Prince said. “Sooner or later, God was going to give him another chance. He has spoken it into existence. If you haven’t been around him, then you probably don’t know his ambition the kid really has. For someone who has been around him for the past four or five years of our lives, it just shows every day.”

Austin and Prince played together and were roommates at Baylor University. Austin was on the verge of becoming a first-round pick in the 2014 NBA Draft when he left Baylor after two seasons. The dream appeared shattered with Austin was diagnosed with Marfan syndrome, a genetic disorder that affects the body’s connective tissue. He was forced to retire from the game before realizing his dream. As a gesture, the NBA drafted Austin on the night of the draft.

Austin announced on Wednesday that he has been cleared to play basketball. He wrote in an Instagram post: “Very excited to announce to everyone that the news is true. I have been blessed by the grace of God to receive a second chance at chasing my dream of playing basketball. Everything happens for a reason and I’m ready to share my testimony and journey with millions of people across the world. #DreamAgain”

When Austin was diagnosed, he asked Prince to wear his uniform number. Prince switched from No. 35 to No. 21. For a reason named Dominque Wilkins, Prince could not wear the number when he was drafted by the Hawks. He selected No. 21, the number backward.

“He’s still in shape,” Prince said. “He is still able to do the things he was doing before. In my opinion, he’s gotten a lot better. I’m excited to see where he goes. … He’s someone who has always been driven so it’s not a surprise to me.”

Prince intended to reach out to his friend following the Hawks game against the Suns Wednesday.

Austin, blind in his right eye since 16 years from a detached retina, averaged 12.1 points, 6.9 rebounds and 2.4 blocks during his two seasons at Baylor. The 7-foot-1 center will explore options of where to play.


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Atlanta Hawks

Nothing imminent but Hawks ‘very busy’ ahead of trade deadline
Nothing imminent but Hawks ‘very busy’ ahead of trade deadline

Two days ahead of the NBA trade deadline and the Hawks continue to be “very busy” exploring possible deals to add to the current roster, according to a person familiar with the situation. The Hawks have had “a lot of conversations with a lot of teams” over the past two days but nothing is imminent. The NBA trade deadline is...
Where the Hawks stand headed into final 26 games of regular season
Where the Hawks stand headed into final 26 games of regular season

The Hawks return to practice on Wednesday following the All-Star break. Their first game after the break is at home against the Heat on Friday. Here is a look at where the team stands in five areas going into the final 26 games of the regular season. The NBA trade deadline is Thursday at 3 p.m. The team that reconvenes on Wednesday could look different...
Complete list of Hawks’ upcoming draft picks
Complete list of Hawks’ upcoming draft picks

With the NBA trade deadline on Thursday at 3 p.m., the Hawks have a number of future draft picks that could be used in a deal. They have all of their own first- and second-round picks for the next six drafts (and beyond) and several other first- and second-rounders. Here is the complete list of draft assets: 2017 First round – Own Second round...
At trade deadline, Budenholzer wants short and long term success
At trade deadline, Budenholzer wants short and long term success

Mike Budenholzer insists he is looking out for the best interest of the Hawks in the short and long term as the NBA trade deadline approaches. Budenholzer wears two hats as head coach and president of basketball operations. He is a strong voice in potential roster moves. Perhaps the head coach wants to win now and the president wants to win in the...
Millsap has five points, five rebounds in All-Star Game
Millsap has five points, five rebounds in All-Star Game

Paul Millsap had five points and five rebounds as the Hawks forward participated in his fourth straight NBA All-Star Game Sunday night. Millsap was 2 of 4 from the floor, including 1 of 3 from 3-point range. He added three assists and a steal in his 13 minutes for the East. The West won the game, 192-182, in New Orleans. The Pelicans’ Anthony...
More Stories