Australia’s $64m man: Basketballer signs bumper NBA deal

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Australian Boomers guard Josh Green will have a key role to play in the Dallas Mavericks’ quest for an NBA championship after signing a three-year contract extension.

Green, the 18th pick in the 2020 draft, has inked a deal worth $64 million ($US41 million), according to ESPN’s senior NBA journalist Adrian Wojnarowski.

The Mavericks believe Green, through his three-point shooting and defence, will complement high-scoring stars Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving and new teammate, former Boston Celtic Grant Williams, in their bid to win the tough western conference and make a run at a title.

Good handles: Dallas Mavericks guard Josh Green (left) has inked a three-year extension.Credit: AP

Green averaged career highs in his 60 games last season, his third in the league. This included an average of 9.1 points per game, at an excellent field goal percentage (53.7) and three-point field goal percentage (40.2). He also started a career-best 21 times.

He was one of five players to shoot at least 40 per cent on three-pointers and 60 per cent on two-point shots last season while attempting at least 100 of each, according to ESPN.

“I know I want to be here. I’m going to work as if I’m going to be here for a long time. I want to be able to win in Dallas,” Green, who turns 24 next month, said at the Mavericks’ media day.

“I’m going to be in Dallas. Whatever their decision, it is their decision. I have the same goal every single day, and that’s just to be the best teammate or the best player I can be for the team.”

Green represented the Boomers at the Tokyo Olympics, but his development was on show when he was inserted into the starting line-up during Australia’s disappointing World Cup campaign in August. This included having 15 points, three rebounds and four steals in a win over Japan.

Boomers coach Brian Goorjian said Green’s maturity was obvious.

“I just saw it when we came back from camp. The guy that I met for the first time a year ago, and the player that came into camp the first couple days, I told him, I said: ‘I was so proud of the development’,” Goorjian said.

“Full credit to the Dallas Mavericks and what they’re doing with their youth because he came in just a much better basketball player than in Tokyo the last time.”

The Mavericks open the new NBA season against the San Antonio Spurs on Thursday (AEDT), where French phenom and No.1 draft pick Victor Wembanyama will officially debut for the Spurs.

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