Dad’s pride in national hero Patty
Patty Mills is a national hero after his incredible performance led the Boomers to a history-making win over Team USA, but proud dad Benny Mills says the NBA star will stay grounded.
Benny could not wipe the smile off his face after Patty scored 30 points - including the Boomers' last 10 - in the 98-94 breakthrough win.
"I'm absolutely proud of him and the Boomers," Benny said.
"They created history - all the guys played really well, which made it easier for him to get in the zone and take it from there.
"I know how much he's put in to get there and to have this success."
Benny, who was in Melbourne to watch Patty with a number of family members, says his son had grown into a great person, both on and off the court, using his standing in world basketball to give back to remote communities across Australia.
In partnership with Australian Indigenous Basketball and Zero Mass Water, Patty is installing hydropanels in six "very remote" Aboriginal communities, struggling through lack of fresh, clean water.
"You know about the kinds of projects he's taken to remote communities and I think that helps him be grounded, have a good foundation and then be proud to go forward and represent the whole nation, the whole country," Benny said.
Patty only took a moment to bask in the glory of being part of the first Boomers squad to defeat Team USA, jetting off for China on a mission to win a medal at the FIBA World Cup.
"We are trying to build towards what the ultimate goal is of being able to win a medal at a major championship and this is just the process to get there," Patty said.
"I think the big victory is just being able to play quality games to be able to prepare us the best way that we can.
"So this is just one step towards getting to where we need to be and growing and building as a group."