Canberra basketballer Patrick Mills has been recognised as Australia's leading indigenous sportsman at last night's Deadly Awards in Sydney.

Mills was named sportsman of the year at the gala awards ceremony at the Sydney Opera House.

The 23-year-old Boomers point guard enjoyed a successful NBA campaign with the Portland Trail Blazers and will play for the Melbourne Tigers in the upcoming NBL season.

Mills beat a host of strong challengers for the award, including Kangaroos and Maroons halfback Johnathan Thurston and Carlton midfielder Andrew Walker.

Thurston took out the outstanding achievement in NRL gong, while Walker won the outstanding achievement in AFL award.

Other major winners on the night included former Australian Idol contestant Jessica Mauboy (female artist of the year), City Homicide star Aaron Pederson (best actor) and Deborah Mailman (best actress) for her work in the TV series Offspring.

Canberra based Dale Huddleston and the Riverbank Band was nominated for band of the year, although this award was won by The Last Kinection.

The awards, now in their 17th year, celebrate Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander achievements in entertainment, music, sport and the community.