By Megan Taros, Jun 13, 2013 05:48 PM EDT
(PHOTO CREDIT: Getty Images) 11-year-old Sebastien De La Cruz sings the National Anthem before the start of the Game 3 of the 2013 NBA Finals match of San Antonio Spurs vs. Miami Heat on June 11, 2013 at AT&T Center in San Antonio, Tx.
The little trooper known as Sebastian De la Cruz, whose rendition of the Star-Spangled Banner at the opening game of the NBA Finals in San Antonio sparked a flurry of racist tweets, will be back for an encore. The traditional Mariachi-style clad kid with "the golden voice," is all ready to wow basketball fans again as the Spurs have invited him to return to AT&T Center, My San Antonio reported.
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The 11-year-old Mexican-American started a whirlwind of controversy and hate when he arrived at center court to sing the country's National Anthem, with folks on Twitter inquiring about "his green card" among other things. De la Cruz has since responded to his critics, reminding everyone that he is American, born and raised in San Antonio.
"It's off my shoulders," he said in a TV interview.
The former "America's Got Talent" contestant will sing at Thursday's Game 4 where the Spurs will face off with the Miami Heat. De la Cruz reacted to both criticisms and his invite back with humility, giving a nod to his parents for teaching him to not be judgmental.
"I just want to thank everybody for their support." As for the "racism remarks," he added: "To be honest, it's just the people how they were raised. My father and my mother told me that you should never judge people by how they look. You should judge them on the inside. And the saying that I go by is never judge a book by its cover."