KAI Sotto is staying in the Japan B. League to play one more season for the Hiroshima Dragonflies while maintaining his door open for another shot at making the NBA.

In a statement yesterday, Mr. Sotto signed a contract extension for the 2023-2024 season with the Dragonflies after an unfortunate quarterfinal exit in the ongoing season.

“I am so grateful to the club for giving me this opportunity and I am happy to have the chance to play again in Japan next season,” said the 7-foot-3 Filipino pride.

Mr. Sotto transferred to Hiroshima in the second half of the B. League season after his two-year stint with the Adelaide 36ers in Australia’s National Basketball League (NBL).

He provided immediate impact with averages of 9.5 points on 52.3% shooting, 6.4 rebounds, 1.4 assists and 1.4 blocks in 21 games as the Dragonflies finished with a 41-18 record before bowing to Chiba Jets in the quarters.

For now though, Mr. Sotto is set to strut his stuff in the NBA Summer League as he stressed the ultimate goal of being the first Filipino homegrown player in the big league.

“The NBA is my biggest dream, so I will continue to work hard in the United States this summer,” added Mr. Sotto, who turned 21 years old last May 11.

“To all the Dragonflies fans, there may be some irregularities in the next season, but I will do my best in an environment where I can make good reports. See you soon.”

The NBA Summer League is slated in July when the B. League is in the offseason, giving Mr. Sotto a second shot at the NBA after going undrafted in last year’s rookie proceedings.

Meanwhile, Kiefer Ravena also inked a contract extension with Shiga Lakestars for his third year in Japan next season albeit in the B. League Division II after the team’s demotion.

The former PBA player from NLEX registered 10.5 points, 4.0 assists and 2.6 rebounds in the Division I season for Shiga, which settled for 23rd place with a 14-46 record for a relegation in the B2. —  John Bryan Ulanday