D-day for Filipino NBA aspirant Kai Sotto

23/06/2022 10:00:00 PM

The Nation's Leading Newspaper

Destiny will be revealed on Friday, June 23, when the NBA Rookie Draft commences in Brooklyn, New York, with the Filipino sensation pinning his hopes that the blood, sweat and tears are all worth it.

The Nation's Leading Newspaper

Reynald I.The offseason is underway and gets from zero to 60 quickly as the 2022 NBA Draft unfolds Thursday night in Brooklyn.MANILA, Philippines – Coaching opportunities, not just here in the Philippines but also abroad, keep coming for Tim Cone.The last time the Warriors lifted the Larry O’Brien Championship Trophy, in 2018, Kevin Durant was part of the all-star crew.

Magallon Ever since he had the growth spurt that allowed him to reach his 7-foot-3 lean frame and give this basketball-crazy nation a real hope to see a homegrown Filipino play in the NBA, Kai Sotto wanted nothing but to get his name called in one of the brightest stage in the world of basketball Photo from Sacramento Kings Destiny will be revealed on Friday, June 23, when the NBA Rookie Draft commences in Brooklyn, New York, with the Filipino sensation pinning his hopes that the blood, sweat and tears are all worth it.From a seven-foot teen beanpole out of Ateneo High School, Sotto went great lengths and traveled miles away from home soil to get his body and mind ready for the dream he has shared with a hundred million others.Free agency opens with the start of the new league year on July 1.After his supposed Ignite stint together with now NBA players Jalen Green and James Wiseman fell apart, Sotto tried to find another way to beef up his experience for the world’s biggest league.“I told him I would love to do something like that someday and immerse myself, be a fly on the wall if necessary or go get coffee, whatever it takes to just hang out with the coaching staff,” Cone said.He joined the Adelaide 36ers in Australia’s NBL where he showed flashes of his potential, averaging 7.Younger talent reaching free agency for the first time can be coveted more than top-dollar veterans, and Suns center Deandre Ayton stands atop the list of restricted free agents.72 points on 50-percent shooting from the field, 4.8 assists per game in the playoffs on his first trip to the championship.

48 rebounds and close to a block in 15 minutes of play.1 overall pick on the pine based on an “internal” decision from coach Monty Williams.“This is very humbling for me and I’m willing to go out there and do whatever it takes,” Cone said.Failing to make some noise ahead of the draft, Sotto then went on with workouts with a number of NBA teams in hopes to convince them and take a gamble on his talent.“I would say I’m a skilled seven footer that can shoot from the outside.All the elements are there for a dramatic July.And I’m a pretty good passer at my height as well and I have a high basketball IQ and pretty good shot blocker,” said Sotto, now standing at the doorstep of his NBA dream.Gin Kings’ assistant coach Richard del Rosario will fill in for Cone.Despite the intriguing potential, Sotto’s name failed to reach the Top 60 in the draft final projections of some top US-based websites.There are visible fault lines between the two sides, starting with last October’s very public decision to work the rookie extension with Mikal Bridges and let Ayton float in a prove-it year.Me, Dray, Klay, and Andre, we finally got that bad boy.

After overcoming a minor injury which derailed his workout schedules, his agent Joel Bell is pinning his hopes on one undisclosed NBA team who according to him committed the Filipino center.Whether it will be one from the team he worked out with in the likes of New York Knicks, nChicago Bulls, Cleveland Cavaliers, Atlanta Hawks, Orlando Magic, Sacramento Kings or Indiana Pacers, remains to be seen.But not locking up Ayton paves the way for other suitors to come knocking.So he pursued the next best thing to being an athlete – to write about them.One thing for sure though, along with the mountain of expectations he has in his shoulders are the prayers from his supporters back home who likewise hope to see him set his foot on an NBA court..Nets general manager Sean Marks hardly extinguished the feeling that Irving could be gone this summer when he called out the need for him to go all-in.

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