With nearly 20 games with Mills in the regular rotation, it seems right across the NBA and world people are queing up to profess their love of Vegemite-y Mouse himself, Patrick Mills. Or so it seems.
With Mills by the game appearing to become comfortable with his role, and the team overall getting comfortable with Mills, it seems people out there in the land of BEdge seem to be yelling his short comings (pardon the pun) even louder.
The stats are interesting. Patty has been in the rotation for 19 games now since Nate threw the stick and called "fetch" from the dog house, and the little terrier has seen the team produce 11-7 record as apposed to the 8 - 9, we are 5-1 when Patty plays more than 20 minutes.
Mills is not your typical NBA prospect, which I think makes him hard for people to pin. Some appear to look at him like a Euro, which path typically goes playing pro ball in Europe and landing in the NBA. Patty never actually did that, plus Australia is farther from Europe than the USA is?????
Some see him as a 2nd round draft choice (pick 55) out of a middle road school in a weak competition of the NCA, while others just cannot get past the fact that he is 5'11 on a good day and he has a funny voice.
He came to the NBA like this.
Patty played basketball in High School, then got pulled out and went into and played for the AIS (Australian institute of Sport,) which play in the SEABL division of the ABA, which is basically like having the best high school kids in the country put together in a team and entered into a junior collage league, got seen, played 2 seasons for St Mary's (one of which he spent over half the season injured) onto the NBA, with a stint in the Australian National Team where he for all intents and purposes made a name for himself.
People need to understand that in Australia, basketball is not a popular sport, it sits behind Australian Rules Football, Rugby League, Rugby Union (they are 3 different sports for those playing at home) Cricket, Tennis and Soccer as far as popularity is concerned, the result of that is the development channels down under are not as 'refined' as you would find in the USA, Asia or Europe, so the players come from further back from a coaching stand point. Add to that Patty is Indigenous Australian (thats a whole other story though)
The most common detractions on the kid are this;
Patty Mills is short.
Patty Mills gives up points on D (because he is short)
Patty Mills cant penetrate.
Patty Mills turns the ball over.
From where I am sitting, the only thing true of all of that is that he is short, and I suppose you cant coach height into a player, but with his rate of improvement thus far, suggestion that he cant work on and improve the other things is just predetermined prejudice.
Give a mate his dues, Patty Mills had less than an inch of a chance to make the NBA when he landed at the Portland TrailBlazers last year, and was very nearly gone a number of times, but here we are 18 months on and people are ordering number 8 Jerseys from the gift shop.