Patty Mills scored 20 points and Andrew Bogut landed 18 rebounds in what was a heavy minute, stat sheet stuffing contest four our Aussie's in the Spurs vs Warriors game!
For the first time in NBA history three Australian’s started in a single NBA match which was played on Friday between the Golden State Warriors and the San Antonio Spurs.
Andrew Bogut was playing for the Warriors with Patty Mills and Aron Baynes playing for the Spurs, it was the first injection to the starting line-up on the season for Mills and Baynes.
The Spurs had three of their stars; Tony Parker, Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili all sitting out for this match-up. This was why many thought it would be an easy win for the Warriors, but the Spurs had other ideas.
In what ended up being a hotly contested game, the Spurs came away with the win off a game winning tip-in from Tiago Splitter with 2.1 seconds remaining.
Mills and Bogut were huge for their respective teams in the neck and neck game. Bogut pulled down a whopping 18 rebounds, some of which came at very important moments throughout the game.
Although Bogut didn’t score in the second half, eight points in the first half and his presence around the rim was most definitely utilised by the Warriors.
Patty Mills clearly loves to play against the Warriors as he averages a massive 27 points per game when he starts against Golden State.
He certainly didn’t let anyone down this time around, regardless of how mad Spurs coach Gregg Popovich got a some points in the game from a few heat checks. Mills provided so much energy for this Spurs outfit and did a very honourable job replacing Parker in the starting line-up.
By the half-time break Mills had 14 points - equal second best on the court – to place only behind his teammate Kawhi Leonard.
The highlight of the match for Mills and perhaps all the Aussie's combined came with just over a minute remaining in the first half.
Mills managed to get in Bogut’s face after one of his many defensive rebounds, then stole the ball, regathered basically on the free throw line and then he stepped back to drain a 3 pointer to even things up at 48.
This shows just how much confidence Mills has at the moment and also when given the chance by coach Popovich, Patty can perform at a very high level.
Mills went on to post an impressive stat line of 20 points, 5 rebounds, 3 steals and 2 assists in just over 34 minutes of game time.
Not to be forgotten is Aron Baynes. After being dropped to the D-League earlier this month he has done enough to fight his way back into the team and then with Duncan sitting this contest out, Baynes become a starter.
Baynes played less than 9 minutes and overall had a disappointing game. He scored two points and grabbed three rebounds and also had two turnovers.
After this historic night for Australian basketball I can only hope that we continue to see more Aussie’s representing us over the NBA in the future.