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G-League chief thinks Kai Sotto has qualities to go all the way to the NBA
by Reynald Magallon, May 15, 2020 11:26am
G-League President Shareef Abdur-Rahim was glad to have the 7'2" Filipino Kai Sotto in the NBA G-League select team together with Fil-American Jalen Green and other top highschool prospect in the United States.
Sotto, who has been with in the US since last year in bid to chase his NBA dream made a huge step towards that goal on Wednesday after announcing that he'll be signing with the NBA developmental League.
Sotto was with the Atlanta-based club, The Skills Factory and was getting offer to play in Division 1 NCAA schools as well as European ball clubs. The Filipino phenom however decided to hone his talent in the G-League as part of the South California team which will be handled by some of the NBA coaches.
Speaking to the Philippine media through an online video conference organized by NBA Philippines on Thursday evening, Abdur-Rahim bared the qualities Sotto has to become a legitimate NBA player in the future.
"We want to see NBA-level talent.We want a player that we are projecting and expect to go forward on their way to the NBA," said the G-League executive.
"There are a lot of talented players around the world but not all of them would fit in this program because, at times, they may not be ready for the commitment of preparing for the NBA… We want to make sure that to identify players that are tracking towards the NBA and having the right attitude. And I think Kai fits all of those areas. He comes to us really on his way to do great things. We are happy to be part and continue to be part of the process," added Abdur-Rahim.
Sotto was the first international player to committ to the G-League together with Americans Isaiah Todd and Daishen Nix.
The NBA isn't exactly strange to the Filipino wunderkind as several media outlets in the US have been following the development of the young center after he was ranked 51st overall in the @247 sports rankings and 62nd overall in the ESPN Top 100 high school player rankings for 2020 class.
Sotto also participated in the Basketball without Borders camp during the NBA All-Stars.
"“I know he’s kinda been a part of the NBA family coming out through the Jr. NBA and Basketball Without Borders and coaching there in the Philippines. We are happy to continue to be part of this journey," said Abdur-Rahim.
The G-League head also hopes that Sotto's decision to take the G-League route will open up opportunities for other international players to take the same route in the NBA.
"We always have a plan to have our program to improve international players. We are excited to welcome Kai knowing how big basketball is in the Philippines. We hope Kai is an inspiration to younger Filipino players that aspire to play in the NBA and aspire to be in the G League.
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