After playing one season for Adelaide in Australia’s National Basketball League, Filipino teen Kai Sotto has declared for the 2022 NBA Draft.
The 19-year old son of former PBA player Ervin Sotto announced his decision on Instagram just days after wrapping up his stint with the 36ers.
“I have declared for the 2022 NBA Draft. Please pray for and support me during my quest to fulfill my ultimate dream,” wrote Sotto on the photo and video sharing social networking service.
The former Ateneo high school standout capped off his pro debut with 12 points, 7 rebounds, and 4 blocks against the New Zealand Breakers as the Sixers closed out the season with a 10-18 record. He scored a career-high 21 points in a loss to the Brisbane Bullets last April 11.
Sotto wrapped up his NBL campaign with decent averages of of 7.5 points on 50% shooting from the field and 69% from the 15-foot line, 4.5 rebounds, and 0.8 blocks in 15 minutes of playing time.
Below is Sotto’s full statement:
Thank you, Adelaide! Thank you, Australia! It has been an unforgettable year!
To the 36ers Management, my teammates, my coaching staff and my agent Joel Bell, I am a better man and a better professional player than a year ago because you all took me under your wing and challenged and mentored me to live up to expectations.
To all the fans both old and new who support and even travel to games, and have lifted me up on this incredible journey, I am so blessed and inspired when I read your messages and hear your cheers!
To my Mom and Dad and Erin and Tim and my extended family, I am truly grateful for all your unending guidance and all the sacrifices over the years of training and travel.
To Tita P and Tita Chao from EWP, I could not have asked for a better management team that believed in me and supported me and my family from the beginning of my journey.
Finally, an athlete like me doesn’t get to a certain point of his journey without the help and support of many coaches, trainers, sponsors, media and even the army of bloggers who write about me endlessly! I hope to personally thank you all someday.
I have declared for the 2022 NBA Draft. Please pray for and support me during my quest to fulfill my ultimate dream.
Despite mock drafts placing him out of the top 60, the 7-foot-3 center is projected to be taken mid to late in the second round as there have been persistent reports of interest among multiple NBA teams.
If ever he gets drafted, Sotto will become the first full-blooded Filipino to make it to the biggest stage in basketball. He will be joining Fil-Am compatriots Jordan Claskson of Utah and Jalen Green of Houston.