After leading Australia to a bid in the 2020 Olympics, San Antonio Spurs backup point guard Patty Mills got left out of FIBA’s All-Star Five lineup.
In spite of his heroics throughout the tournament after leading Australia to fourth place out of 32 team in the FIBA World Cup, point guard Patty Mills of the San Antonio Spurs was snubbed out of FIBA honors in favor of some other NBA guards.
Mills, who turned 31 in mid-August, led the way for the Boomers with a stellar line of 22.8 points, 3.9 assists and 2.3 boards and roughly one steal per game. His shooting prowess was on full display as Mills narrowly missed a 50-40-90 line. Utilizing his quick trigger and shifty slashing ability, he shot 49.6 percent from the field, 40.4 percent from three-point land and 86 percent from the charity stripe.
As the heart and soul of one of the world’s fiercest international basketball clubs, Mills put his body and heart on the line by giving his all each and every game. With the mentality that he’ll do whatever it takes to lead his team, Mills showcased many of his capabilities including multiple 30+ point games and three games with six or more assists.
This competition’s All-Star Five consists of all former or current NBA players: Ricky Rubio of Spain, Evan Fournier of France, Bogdan Bogdanovic of Serbia, Luis Scola of Argentina and Marc Gasol of Spain. There are valid arguments to be made for all of these players, but Mills meant more to his team than most of the competition meant to their respective teams.
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Mills finished as the second-best scorer in the entire World Cup, just one point shy of Bogdanovic’s 183 total points. However, Serbia finished one spot below Australia in the final standings.
Fournier was exceptional throughout the tournament, but he wasn’t as vital to France’s success as Mills was to Australia’s. Although France came away with the win over Australia to secure it’s third place finish, Fournier was an abysmal 5-of-17 from the field with three fouls, three turnovers and no assists.
Meanwhile Mills made 6-of-12 shots and played pesky defense against France’s Frank Ntilikina, who was limited to 1-of-7 shooting in the contest. In an unlikely act of defensive aggression, Mills blocked his only two shots of the entire tournament in the closing game against France – Fournier didn’t record a defensive stat.
As the face of the Australian National Team and one of the game’s most respected international competitors, this was a slap in the face to the Spurs’ lovable bench leader.