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Aussie NBA wrap: San Antonio’s Patty Mills explodes for 21 points as Spurs remain unbeaten

Patty Mills has continued his impressive start for San Antonio adding 21 while shooting an astonishing eight of nine from the field as the Spurs claimed their second win of the NBA season.

The 32-year-old had a near perfect game, nailing his first eight field goals including five straight three-pointers as his side got the better of the Toronto Raptors and fellow Boomer Aron Baynes.

Mills said last week that missing the playoffs in 2020 “pissed (him) off” and the Boomers powerhouse that Australian hoops fans have become accustomed to, now looks to be getting the improved opportunity in his 12th NBA season.

“How I play for the Boomers, that’s my identity, that’s who I am, that’s when I’m at my best,” Mills told ESPN.

San Antonio Spurs' Patty Mills (8) passes as he drives against Toronto Raptors' Fred VanVleet (23) during the first half of an NBA basketball game Saturday.
Camera IconSan Antonio Spurs’ Patty Mills (8) passes as he drives against Toronto Raptors’ Fred VanVleet (23) during the first half of an NBA basketball game Saturday. Credit: Darren Abate/AP

“But the fact is, coming here to San Antonio, I accepted a role within a tight family, in an environment that was iconic to a winning franchise, and was actually about to make a massive impact in doing so. We all make sacrifices along the way to achieve something.

“Me passing up opportunities on my dream of being a starting point guard was one of them.”

Mills’ performance follows 13 points in 19 minutes in the side’s opening win over Memphis on Christmas eve.

Baynes tallied 13 points and seven rebounds in just 20 minutes of play for Toronto, who have lost both of their opening appearances this season, Baynes replacing Marc Gasol as the Canadian club’s preferred centre.

Toronto Raptors' Aron Baynes plays against the Charlotte Hornets during the first half of an NBA preseason basketball game in Charlotte.
Camera IconToronto Raptors’ Aron Baynes plays against the Charlotte Hornets during the first half of an NBA preseason basketball game in Charlotte. Credit: Chris Carlson/AP

Aussie Philadelphia superstar Ben Simmons looked comfortable under new coach Doc Rivers adding 15 points, nine rebounds and seven assists to keep the 76ers unbeaten over their first two games with a 20-point victory over New York.

Utah were upset by Minnesota, South Australian Joe Ingles managed 10 points and two rebounds off the bench, while Timberwolves’ number one draft pick Anthony Edwards showed great signs with 18 points in 22 minutes of play.

Former Sydney kings import Jae’Sean Tate had a great debut for Houston, the 25-year-old with 13 points and four rebounds in 37 minutes off the bench after being labelled one of the surprises from training camp for new coach Stephen Silas.

The Rockets losing to Portland in overtime by two points, former league MVP James Harden finished with 44 points as did Blazer CJ McCollum.

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