7-foot-1 Kai Sotto joins Gilas practice for the very first time

ByAllan Lim

Photo by Winston Baltazar

Kai Sotto, the 15-year old son of former PBA player Ervin Sotto, attended his very first practice with Gilas Pilipinas Monday night at the Meralco Gym.

The 7-foot-1 Sotto is currently in 9th Grade playing in his 2nd year for the Ateneo Blue Eaglets in the UAAP Basketball Juniors Division.

The teen prodigy didn’t disappoint during the training session supervised by coach Chot Reyes himself as he was throwing down two-handed slams left and right.

And Reyes has nothing but good words for the tallest and youngest member of the pool.

“You saw it. He was able to run with us. It’s very encouraging and there was a time he was together with Will Gozum, the two high school guys – that’s the future right there,” said a beaming Reyes.

Since the national team will be facing a tall Aussie squad in the first game of the 2nd window, the Gilas coaching staff invited bigs Ola Adeogun, Eugene Toba, and Chibueze Ikeh to try and emulate the size and speed of the Australians.

For his part, Sotto said he didn’t have a hard time coping up with Reyes’ signature dribble-drive offense.

“Ikaw naman kung naglalaro ka ng basketball everyday, isang tingin mo lang makikita mo na agad yung ginagawa e,” he said.

Sotto is part of the 23-man national team pool for the 2023 FIBA World Cup which will be staged here in the Philippines as well as in Indonesia and Japan