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Patty Mills, Commonwealth Games Ambassador
It's been an eventful summer for Patty Mills. Our favourite San Antonio Spur has kept busy. For starters, his free agent status was quickly settled with him tying up a 4-year, $50 million extension on 1st July:
He's since made a trip back to his homeland, where his calendar remains packed. A quick look at his Instagram account shows his off season exploits, from enjoying himself with his partner in Brisbane, to trying his hand at another sport, and getting in touch with his roots with some traditional Aboriginal dance practice:
He's also giving back to the Aussie community in another way, having been announced as an official ambassador for the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games.
“It’s an honour to join an inspiring and talented group of Australian athletes as an official ambassador for the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games," Mills said.
“I’m a proud Indigenous Australian and I’m excited to spread the word about the Commonwealth Games being in my home country and the return of basketball for the first time since Melbourne 2006."
As a veteran Boomer and a leader within Indigenous communities across the country, Patty is as deserving of this role as any.
"Patty is a world class basketballer, a champion on and off the court and is proud to tell the story of his family and Australia to the world. He is the perfect person to share the values of the Commonwealth Games movement and reinforce our Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) objectives," said GOLDOC Chairman Peter Beattie AC.
"He has a massive following and is a great addition to the ambassador family already spreading the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games message to Australia and the world."
Mills' first duties as ambassador will be a North Queensland tour in early August, which includes stops in GC2018 event cities Cairns and Townsville, who will host the basketball preliminary rounds at the Games.
Unfortunately, Patty won't be taking part in any actual basketball action due to the schedule clash with his NBA commitments, but it's nevertheless a nice honour. It is also perhaps indicative of the larger presence basketball enjoys in Australia now, after the recent success of both the men's and women's national teams, as well as Aussie players such as Mills, Joe Ingles, and Matthew Dellavedova playing at a high level and in key roles for their respective NBA teams.
“Whilst NBA commitments will keep me from competing at GC2018, this ambassador role allows me to play a part and share the passion and excitement of these Games on a global stage."
Well said, Pattycakes!