The Utah Jazz officially added another player to their roster leading up to training camp.
If you heard the news and wondered just exactly who Nazareth Mitrou-Long is, you're not the only one.
For starters, Mitrou-Long is a 23-year-old shooting guard who overcame hip injuries to put together a solid senior season in the Big 12 at Iowa State. Although a longshot to make the Jazz's regular season roster — the Jazz already have shooting guards Rodney Hood, Alec Burks and Donovan Mitchell — his camp invitation will provide him a chance at this level and could lead to other opportunities, including with Utah's G-League affiliate, the SLC Stars.
And, yes, he's happy to be here.
The Canadian born-and-bred Mitrou-Long has something in common with a good portion of his new team's roster — he was born outside of the U.S. The Mississauga, Ontario, native joins a Jazz team that features players from eight different countries.
Mitrou-Long was ranked as the seventh-best player coming out of Canada by North Pole Hoops after playing for St. Martin High and with NBA players Tristan Thompson and Cory Joseph in AAU ball. He spent part of his high school career playing in the States, including in Maryland (Montrose Christian) and in Las Vegas (Findlay Prep).
A communications studies major, Mitrou-Long chose Iowa State over Rice, Dayton, Creighton and Miami (Florida). His original senior season (2015-16) was hampered when he continued to feel discomfort after offseason hip surgery, and he was granted a medical redshirt after playing just eight games.
Mitrou-Long excelled for the Cyclones as a redshirt senior, earning All-Big-12 second-team honors while helping Iowa State win the conference tourney and into the second round of the NCAA tournament. He was the Big 12's leading 3-point shooter, hitting 2.8 threes a game on 38.4 percent shooting. His 260 career treys were the second-most in Iowa State history.
One of his college highlights was helping ISU beat Kansas at home to snap the Jayhawks' 51-game winning streak at Allen Fieldhouse. Mitrou-Long scored 22 points and sank 6 of 11 3-pointers in that road win.
Mitrou-Long had a solid showing while playing for the Sacramento Kings during the NBA Summer League in Las Vegas two months ago. He averaged 9.8 points on 40 percent shooting, showing an ability to hit from outside and drive, while also putting up 4.3 rebounds, 2.0 assists, 0.8 steals and receiving two "Clutch, @NazzyJML" shoutouts" from the Kings Twitter account in four games.
The shooting guard's summer breakout game included 21 points, six rebounds and five assists.
Mitrou-Long didn’t have quite as much success with Indiana before heading to Las Vegas. During the Orlando Pro Summer League, he averaged 9.3 points on 37.8 percent shooting, 3.0 rebounds and 0.8 assists (but also 0.8 turnovers) in four outings.
Two things about his name:
1. His full name is Nazareth Jersey Mitrou-Long, but he simply goes by Naz (only one z).
2. He used to simply go by Naz Long, but he added Mitrou to his last name two years ago to honor his mom, Georgia Mitrou, who's a Greek Canadian. His father, Jersey Long, is of a Trinidadian background.
Mitrou-Long will join the Jazz at training camp which begins Sept. 25.