Despite already getting his high school diploma, Kai Sotto will still not be eligible to play in an NCAA Division I school since he already played for pro team G League Ignite.
But that does not mean that the possibilities aren’t endless for the young Filipino. After all, he is already a professional player.
Currently, Sotto’s handlers East West Private have assured that the 7-foot-3 lanky big man remains committed to Gilas. They are also carefully plotting his next step in the US.
“We were informed by Kai’s management team that it might be a bit challenging for Kai to join in this practice bubble because they want to solidify Kai’s pathway in the US,” Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas Special Assistant to the President Ryan Gregorio told Spin.ph.
And Sotto’s next journey might be with a group that has covered him since 2019 — Overtime.
Overtime is the same social media powerhouse that has created mixtapes for future NBA stars while they are still in high school. And it has built a league called Overtime Elite.
Overtime Elite is a league that offers a year-round development program combining world-class coaching, cutting-edge sports science and performance technologies, top-notch facilities, and a rigorous, highly personalized academic program that energizes and enhances each athlete’s journey from proficiency to pro.
“In just four years, Overtime has become synonymous with sports for a new generation of athletes and fans, with programming that is viewed more than 14 billion times a year and an audience of more than 45 million social media followers,” said Dan Porter, Overtime’s CEO and co-founder.
“We have created an amazing platform by telling the stories of the next generation of superstars. Now, it’s time to leverage that platform to create a league that strengthens players’ development and performance and results in fewer injuries and longer careers.”
The league will feature up to 30 players, all living, learning, training, and playing in a single city. OTE’s inaugural season begins in September.
Every player will get to earn a six-figure salary with a minimum of $100,000. In addition, OTE will also give each player the freedom to find their own sponsors.
“Many athletes aren’t properly prepared for what it really means to go pro,” said Carmelo Anthony, a member of OTE’s board of directors.
“We need to do a better job of empowering the next generation of players and setting them up for success. OTE is leading the way on that front by offering players a comprehensive route that fully develops the athlete – not just basketball skills, but also education, economic empowerment and building their own brand. Having this type of guidance for high school players is critical in setting them up for a successful career both on and off the court.”
Yes, the program is just like Ignite with even more perks for the prospects.
Overtime has been documenting Sotto since the 2019 Chooks-to-Go National Basketball Training Center National Finals. And they might also be the ones to help Sotto reach the NBA dream.