Kai Sotto wants to emulate Pau Gasol’s all-around game

By: Inquirer.net - Inquirer.net | December 13,2020 - 05:55 PM

FILE – Kai Sotto at the Basketball Without Borders NBA Camp. NBA PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines — A quick glance at Kai Sotto and one may argue that the youngster can be compared to Dallas star Kristaps Porzingis.

Both are insanely tall with Sotto listed at 7-foot-2 just an inch shorter than Porzingis and the two players are on the spectrum of long and agile bigs who can operate on all three levels offensively.

Sotto, who’s part of the NBA G League Ignite team, said that people can freely compare him to anyone but the one NBA player he’d like to emulate is the smooth operating Spanish legend Pau Gasol.

“I’m like Pau Gasol who’s more all-around,” said Sotto in a virtual press conference. “He can score, pass, can defend, can dribble, and can shoot.”

The 7-foot Gasol was one of the best big men of his generation and helped the Los Angeles Lakers teams that won the 2009 and 2010 titles alongside Kobe Bryant.

A six-time NBA All-Star, Gasol averaged 17 points, 9.2 rebounds, 3.2 assists, and 1.6 blocks in his career.

Sotto’s also receiving top quality education when it comes to ultimately reaching his goal of becoming Gasol’s duplicate.

Ignite head coach Brian Shaw was an assistant coach of Phil Jackson during Gasol’s time with the Lakers and he’s also teaching Sotto how to operate in the famed triangle offense.

“He’s a player that I watch with coach Shaw and coach Rasheed [Abdul-Rahman]. We’ve been watching clips of him in the Lakers and the (Chicago) Bulls on how they play and execute the triangle,” said Sotto.

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