AFTER a botched bid to suit up in the NBA G League, can Kai Sotto suit up in the UAAP?
League executive director Atty. Rebo Saguisag could not be reached for comment but two members of the Board of Managing Directors told Malaya-Business Insight yesterday said Sotto can no longer play in the UAAP after he turned pro and signed with Ignite in May last year.
“I would think so (Sotto can no longer play in the UAAP),” said the insider, who spoke on condition of anonymity.
“Kung iyong Pilipino nga na nag-pro sa Pilipinas, hindi na puwedeng makalaro sa UAAP, iyon pa kayang nag-pro outside the country.”
Another member of the league’s board expressed the same sentiments.
“As I understand, pro na siya,” the insider said. “He can no longer play in the UAAP.”
East West Private, the management firm that handles Sotto’s career, is tightlipped on what will be the next move of the Filipino teen prodigy.
He is also doubtful for the US NCAA since he lost his amateur status when he got paid by Ignite.
Sotto’s contract with the team is reportedly good for only a year, leaving Europe as the logical next destination.
Trying out for other G League squads, playing for Gilas, or in the PBA are also among his options.
A former UAAP juniors’ MVP with Ateneo High School, Sotto opted to skip college and go pro.
He left the country in 2019 to toughen up at the Atlanta-based The Skills Factory and linked up with Ignite in the NBA G League.
Sotto’s coveted NBA dreams are still alive, but it just got tougher from here.
What was initially seen as a breakthrough stint with the pioneering squad in the G League fell apart when he chose flag and country.