Adelaide coach: NBL is just the start for Kai Sotto

Published November 25, 2021, 1:15 PM

by Reynald I. Magallon

Adelaide 36ers head coach CJ Burton is convinced that Kai Sotto’s stint in Australia’s National Basketball League is just the first step for a bright future ahead.

Photo from Adelaide 36ers

Aware of what the 7-foot-3 teen could bring, Burton believes that a lot of great things await Sotto if he can unleash his full potential while using the NBL as his springboard to the NBA.

“It’s just the starting point so I believe he’s gonna show bigger and better things. What it will be in the season right now is the baby steps to keep improving every day and continue to work on his body,” said Burton during Sotto and Adelaide’s virtual conference for the Philippine media which was organized by Tap Go on Friday, Nov. 25.

Sotto, for his part, is also tempering expectations heading into his first pro season as he tries to learn the ropes from Burton and some of Adelaide’s much seasoned big men in former NBA players Isaac Humphries and Cameron Bairstow and NBL mythical team member Daniel Johnson.

The Filipino teen phenom said it was a great opportunity being able to play alongside these premiere big men and he’s just absorbing everything he can learn especially with Bairstow, a former Chicago Bulls slotman, willingly taking him under his wings.

“I think the goal for me every day is to be 0.0001% better every single day, I’m trying to make the most out of every day to get better and stronger and this year,” said Sotto who’s also keeping the upcoming 2023 FIBA World Cup which the country is set to host, in mind.

Burton stressed that the focus for Sotto right now is just to improve and be the best version of himself while getting pitted against the top-notch competition in the NBL.

“Right now, what I have install for him is to have this young man grow, be mature and be the best possible player that he can become and with that, that takes time and work and what hes been doing what hes been putting so far has been amazing.”

 
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