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Clarkson, Sotto impress Parks

Gilas Pilipinas veteran Ray Parks believes Jordan Clarkson and Kai Sotto will be definite threats when the FIBA Basketball World Cup unfolds next year.

After playing with Clarkson and Sotto in the FIBA World Cup Asian Qualifiers last Monday, the 28-year-old Parks said the duo of the two cagers will be a solid force that can carry Gilas against the best teams in the biggest cagefest co-hosted by the Philippines, Japan, and Indonesia soon.

Just like most Filipino hopefuls, he couldn’t wait to see them perform in a much bigger stage.

“Freakishly talented, I’m excited to see a bright future for Kai. JC has a lot in store on his young career in the NBA,” Parks said.

“I just wanna be a part of it, I wanna be a witness like everybody else.”

Clarkson and Sotto definitely lived up to the expectations.

Although they split their games with Lebanon and Saudi Arabia, Sotto’s power down low and Clarkson’s offensive firepower showed glimpses of what they can bring in the World Cup.

Their duo shone with the biggest potential, highlighted by the Utah Jazz swingman’s sick passes that led to the 7-foot-3 Sotto’s unstoppable alley-oop finishes.

By the numbers, Sotto and Clarkson combined for a glowing average of 38 points in their two games, which makes up 46 percent of the entire team’s offensive output in the fourth window.

Still, Sotto is far from satisfied.

The 20-year-old youngster returns to Australia as he shifts focus with Adelaide 36ers in the National Basketball League.

He said he needs to work on a lot of aspects, knowing that the level of competition in the NBL will be a big help for him.

Sotto’s chances of still making it to the National Basketball Association can also bolster as the 36ers battle with Oklahoma City Thunders and Phoenix Suns on their pre-season buildup.

“I’ll go back to Australia tomorrow, will go back to my team and go back to training,” Sotto said.

“I have to be better. I never had a perfect game, and I think I didn’t play well enough.”

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