Miami Heat

Miami Heat centre Kelly Olynyk hopes to inspire the next generation of Canadian basketball players

Not only is Kelly Olynyk proud to be Canadian, he's hoping to be an inspiration for the next generation.

Olynyk, who was born in Toronto and moved to Kamloops, British Columbia in Grade 7, said as much following the Miami Heat's Game 3 win over the Los Angeles Lakers in the 2020 NBA Finals.

"Kind of hardly home, always reppin," Olynyk said to the media. "I'm proud to be Canadian, to be from B.C., Kamloops. I've grown a lot, grown up there, built what I was there as a basketball player. It's prepared me for everything I'm doing now.

"Hopefully that inspires some kids back in B.C., whether it's Kamloops or Vancouver or anything, watching it and know that this stuff is possible. If you put in the work and the effort and stay true to yourself, you can pave your own path."

Now in his third season with the Heat, Olynyk's minutes have been up and down in the playoffs, but he's made a big impact in the Finals.

With Bam Adebayo sidelined with a neck injury, Olynyk made the most of his opportunities in Game 2, coming off the bench for 24 points and nine rebounds in 37 minutes of play. He followed that up with 17 points and seven rebounds in 31 minutes in Game 3, helping the Heat defeat the Lakers to get their first win of the series.

Those performances have boosted Olynyk's numbers to 15.0 points and 7.0 rebounds per game in the series, making him the Heat's third-leading scorer and tying him with Jimmy Butler for their leading rebounder.

Olynyk and the Heat will look to tie the series up at 2-2 in Game 4 on Tuesday, Oct. 6. The game will air on ABC in the United States and TSN Network and RDS in Canada at 9:00 p.m. ET.

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