Story by Stephen Poirier | Photo by Mack Lamoureux
CHARLOTTETOWN - The Island Storm has announced Saturday the signing of Demitri Harris, 26, a two-year starter at Saint Mary’s University in Halifax.
The six-foot-six small forward will join the Storm's training camp roster for the upcoming 2016-17 season. This will be his first attempt at professional basketball after a short stint with the Vancouver Balloholics in the American Basketball Association.
“He has good size and athleticism, with a deep skill set,” commented Storm coach Joe Salerno. “We are very excited to see what his first season of pro ball can develop into."
Harris is known as a two-way threat that uses his size and athleticism to his benefit on both ends of the floor.
“I’m a hustle player. I like to dunk,” he said.
Since signing with the Storm, Harris has been putting in a lot of early morning hours to have his body ready for December.
“I’ve been training every morning at 5 a.m. I’m trying to add some strength.”
Born and raised in Vancouver’s east end, one of the roughest neighbourhoods in the country, Harris is looking forward to moving to the east coast once again.
“The people are so friendly. Out there you can be walking and 12 feet ahead of you someone is waiting with the door held open.”
Being First Nations, Harris is excited for the opportunity to play somewhere with a strong indigenous presence. He said he owes everything to his community.
“I would not have received a pro contract without my (First Nations) community.”
Salerno complimented Harris' size, athleticism and skill set, a rare combination. He also mentions the young player is just the type of talent the team needs for reasons that don’t pertain to basketball.
“He is a high character guy, something we value greatly.”
Salerno said Harris was one of the top players at the NBL combine in Winnipeg this offseason and one of the more talented Canadian players he has come across all summer.
“His upside and potential on the basketball court limitless.”