"When I meet people for the first time they think I’m African American."
That’s what some people in the United State assume when they meet Patty Mills.
Appearing on League Nation Live in front of 100 audience members, Patty Mills explained that in the States, people (including his teammates) assume he’s a black American.
“It’s a good topic starter for me to be able to let them know where I’m from and everything about my background.”
“Being in San Antonio everyone is really intrigued with my story I guess and the Indigenous Australian story and its culture and background. That’s’ one thing about being over there, it gives me a platform to really use basketball my Indigenous background and I take a lot of pride in doing that.”
The San Antonio Spurs superstar is only the second Indigenous Australian to play in the NBA and the first to win an NBA Championship.
By educating his teammates and others about the importance of Australia's Indigenous history, Patty is a role model to young Indigenous people.
Future of Australian Basketball looks bright:
Fresh from the Rio Olympics, boomers point guard Patty Mills said it’s a ‘different feeling’ playing for Australia compared to playing for the Spurs because you’re part of a ‘big business with a lot of money’.
“When you put in the Green and Gold there’s a whole other meaning that you take on than when you play in the NBA. When you step on the court there’s a whole lot of pride and passion that comes into it.” He added.
The Boomers returned to Australia without a podium finish but Patty remains confident there’s a lot to look forward to for Australian basketball.
“It was obviously disappointing for us to come away without a medal, we took a huge few steps there with the team that we have, obviously there were a lot of NBA guys, a lot of European guys so we’re developing we’re still yet to add a few NBA guys” he told League Nation Live.