Mills launches new Indigenous league
Australian NBA star Patty Mills will launch his Indigenous Basketball Australia (IBA) league for the next generation of Indigenous youth this Sunday, with 960 athletes to compete in eight locations across the country.
Mills founded the league to provide a participation and success pathway for the next generation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander youths.
The three-time Olympian and NBA champion wants to ensure that Indigenous kids can overcome any challenges or barriers to have a better chance of excelling on the national and international stage.
The competition will run across Australia, including Cairns, Logan, Adelaide, Perth, and Dubbo in regional NSW, with the first round of games scheduled to tip-off after the ceremonies.
Mills won't be in attendance as he focuses on continuing his career-best NBA form with the San Antonio Spurs, but he will leave a special message for the league's competitors.
The champion guard has been blessed with opportunities to live out his NBA dream, and now he wants to give the next generation that same chance.
"My love of basketball has come from the fact that it has brought me happiness, joy, health, education and knowledge with greater appreciation and perspective on life," said Mills, who is averaging 14.3 points off the bench for the Spurs this season.
"At the end of the day, a platform was created for me to carry and be my true identity as an Australian, an Indigenous man of the land.
"When I combine those experiences, I become aware of the positive influence I can have on my own people in Australia who are continuously oppressed.
"It makes me want to work harder at finding ways to provide better opportunities to make a real impact on the lives of my people."
Unique to Mills' program are the "Inspirational and Motivational Sessions" that will complement the weekly competitions.
Role models and motivational speakers will share their personal stories of setting and achieving goals and will also be offering their support to the participants on their journey to success.
The IBA hopes to add more regions and locations to the program in 2022.
Locations for the launch of Patty Mills' Indigenous Basketball Australia (IBA) league for Indigneous youth:
Torres Strait (Thursday Island)
THURSDAY ISLAND SPORT COMPLEX Loban Road, Thursday Island, Michael Loban, 11.30am 12pm
North Queensland (Cairns)
CAIRNS BASKETBALL STADIUM 289 Aumuller Street, Manunda, Kaylynn Zaro, 12.15pm 1pm
South Queensland (Logan)
CORNUBIA PARK SPORTS COMPLEX 146-170 Bryants Rd, Shailer Park, Michael Cedar, 4.30pm 5pm
DUBBO SPORTSWORLD 163 Sheraton Rd, Dubbo, Kimm Naden, 11.15am 12pm
South Australia (Adelaide)
INGLE FARMRECREATION CENTRE 3/58 Beovich Road, Ingle Farm, Ally Wilson, 12.30pm 1pm
Northern Territory Country (Alice Springs)
ALICE SPRINGS BASKETBALL STADIUM 5 Traeger Avenue, Alice Springs, Iesha Smith, 12pm 1pm
Northern Territory Metro (Darwin)
DARWIN BASKETBALL STADIUM Abala Road, Marrara, Timmy Duggan, 3.30pm 4.00pm
Western Australia (Perth)
WARWICK LEISURE CENTRE Cnr Warwick & Wanneroo Road, Warwick, Adam Desmond, 2pm 2.20pm
Originally published as Mills launches new Indigenous league