WITHOUT abandoning his National Basketball Association dream, Kai Sotto has agreed to a contract extension with the Hiroshima Dragonflies in the Japan B.League.
According to the Japan B/League website, Sotto agreed to continue his playing contract until the 2023 to 2024 season with an option to cancel if Sotto makes it to the NBA.
The 7’3” Filipino center is set to join the NBA Summer League in a bid to make it to the world’s top basketball league via the backdoor after he failed to make the draft last year.
“I am so grateful to the club for giving me this opportunity, and I am happy to have the chance to play in Japan next season. The NBA is my biggest dream, so I will continue to work hard in the United States this summer,” said Sotto in an official statement.
“To all the Dragonflies fans, I know there may be some irregularities next season, but I will do my best in the given environment so that I can give you good news. See you soon,” Sotto added.
While the team is looking forward to a better campaign in the coming season, Hiroshima fully supports Sotto’s bid to make it to the NBA. Sotto is reportedly joining the Utah Jazz mini-camp on May 30 and 31.
“There is an option to sign with an NBA team in his contract, so if he signs with an NBA team this summer, there is a possibility that his contract with Hiroshima will be cancelled. In that situation, we as a club are prepared with another option,” said Hiroshima General Manager Shuji Okazaki.
In any case, Okazaki said the team will make further announcement in September, especially since Sotto is also expected to see action for the Gilas Pilipinas squad in the FIBA World Cub Slated for August-September in Manila.
“Around September, we are scheduled to officially announce the contract situation of Kai Sotto. Not just the workouts in the United States this summer, but the World Cup is also coming up this August and let’s all look forward to Kai Sotto’s performance and growth,” Okazaki added.
Sotto played 24 games with the Adelaide 36ers in the Australian NBL before joining Hiroshima, where he averaged 8.92 points, 6.08 boards, 1.38 assists, and 1.29 blocks, helping the team reach the playoffs before bowing to the Chiba Jets.