Kai Sotto’s NBA dreams ‘depend on opportunity,’ says Lakers assistant coach | Inquirer Sports

Kai Sotto’s NBA dreams ‘depend on opportunity,’ says Lakers assistant coach

/ 04:33 PM June 22, 2023

Los Angeles Lakers Phil Handy

Los Angeles Lakers assistant coach Phil Handy. –HANDOUT PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines—Kai Sotto worked out with several teams during the off-season to continue his bid to reach his NBA dream.

Los Angeles Lakers assistant coach Phil Handy, who is in the country as part of a tour around Asia, admitted that he has been watching Sotto before his camps in Dallas, New York and Utah.


Handy believes Sotto’s NBA dreams hinge on the availability of opportunities, saying the Filipino center is “naturally gifted.”


“It [NBA selection] could be this summer, it could be next year. It really just depends on the opportunity,” Handy said during a press conference.

“I’ve had a chance to see him play for a couple of years. He’s naturally gifted. He spent some time down in Australia, and that really helped develop his game.”

Sotto’s stint with the Adelaide 36ers saw him post numbers of 7.1 points and 4.5 rebounds per outing.

The Ateneo product is currently with the Hiroshima Dragonflies in the Japan B.League. He is also being included in Gilas Pilipinas’ 21-man pool for the Fiba World Cup.

Sotto, who went undrafted last year, still has the primary goal of making it in the NBA by working with several NBA teams in camps for the past few weeks.

“I believe he’s very talented. I don’t believe in putting timelines on athletes,” Handy said. “The advice I would give Kai is to keep working, keep playing, and keep being ready for the opportunity.”

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