Kobe Paras also joins Japan B.League, signs with Niigata

Kobe Paras Japan B.League

Photo from Niigata Albirex BB Twitter account

MANILA, Philippines—Kobe Paras became the latest Filipino to play in the Japanese B.League after he signed a contract under the Asian Player Quota with Niigata.

The Albirex BB made the official announcement on their official Twitter account Sunday.

“We are pleased to announce that we have signed Kobe Paras for the 2021-22 season,” posted Niigata.

Paras, who last played for University of the Philippines, expressed his excitement to play in Japan while thanking Niigata head coach Fujitaka Hiraoka for trusting him.

“I am very grateful to have this opportunity to be a part of such a great organization and basketball league,” said Paras in a statement posted on the Albirex BB’s website.

“I look forward to playing in the role that coach Hiraoka has envisioned for me and showcasing the love I have for this game on a professional level in front of the great Niigata boosters.”

Paras is the seventh Filipino to join the Japanese B.League system and the third out of the Fighting Maroons program.

Thirdy Ravena was the first Filipino to play in the B.League when he signed up for the San-En NeoPhoenix in the 2020-21 season while his older brother Kiefer joined the Shiga Lakestars this year.

Paras’ UP teammate Javi Gomez de Liaño joined the Ibaraki Robots while Bobby Ray Parks Jr. signed a contract with the Nagoya Diamond Dolphins.

Javi’s younger brother Juan joined the Earth Friends Tokyo Z with Kemark Cariño going to the Aomori Wat’s in Division 2.

“I can’t wait to arrive in Japan, to work hard on becoming a better player and creating life-long memories with my teammates, staff, and wonderful fans,” said Paras. “I am so excited and I hope you all are as well. See you soon!”

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