Chooks-to-Go brand ambassador and basketball prodigy Kai Sotto, 16, received a Philippine flag from officials of #MagingMagiting campaign partners, Bounty Agro Ventures Inc. (BAVI) and Ayala Foundation Inc. (AFI) during a send-off ceremony. He will spend the next two years in the United States to continue training towards his dream of becoming the first Filipino to play in the National Basketball Association.
BAVI president and general manager Ronald Mascariñas and AFI president Ruel Maranan were among those who bid Sotto good luck in his quest. Joining them are AFI corporate communications senior director Celerina Rosales-Amores and the Chooks-to-Go brand ambassador’s father Ervin Sotto, 37.
For two years, Kai, who stands 7’2″, played for the Ateneo Blue Eaglets, the Ateneo de Manila University’s collegiate men’s varsity basketball team that plays in the Philippines’ premiere collegiate league University Athletic Association of the Philippines. The team won the UAAP Juniors in the 2017-2018 season.
On March 20, 2019, Kai played his last game for the Ateneo Blue Eaglets. He posted 24 point and eight boards in the team’s loss to the Jalen Green-led FilAm Sports USA in 2019 Chooks-to-Go NBTC League National Finals–Supreme 16.
It is Kai’s goal to join the NBA by 2021 or 2022. On March 25, 2019, he took to Instagram to explain his decision to move to the U.S.
Kai is the eldest son of Ervin, a former professional basketball player who last played for Byaheng SCTEX of the Pilipinas Commercial Basketball League. Currently, the latter is an assistant coach for the NLEX Road Warriors.
Ervin was the seventh overall pick in the 2004 Philippine Basketball Association draft by the Purefoods Tender Juicy Hotdogs. Before joining NLEX Road Warriors camp, he played for the Shell Turbo Chargers, the Barangay Ginebra Kings, the Air21 Express and the Alaska Aces.
Meanwhile, here is Kai talking about his NBA dream: