NBA hopeful Kai Sotto finally got a taste of full-contact practice with the Gilas Pilipinas team.
The 7’3” Sotto got to do so on Monday evening after getting clearance to suit up for Gilas’ practices for the coming 2023 FIBA World Cup.
Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas president Al Panlilio got to watch Sotto play for some minutes after team doctor Randy Molo discussed the players’s condition with his personal physician.
“That’s good news. He’s been cleared to play and again, we’re looking forward to seeing him play also in the friendlies to get ready… I mean for everybody to get ready when the games start on the (August) 25th,” said Panlilio.
Gilas is preparing to have friendlies with teams which will arrive early, like Mexico, Greece and Montenegro.
Sotto, who sustained a back injury during his time with the Orlando Magic in the NBA Summer League 2023, was not around when Gilas played a series of friendlies in Estonia and Lithuania.
He also missed the Heyuan WUS International Basketball Tournament in China because of his condition.
The Gilas coaching staff is seeking to raise the level of intensity of the practice sessions, now that many participating squads are about to set foot on Philippine soil.