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Sotto keeps fingers crossed

Kai Sotto hopes that third time’s a charm as the Orlando Magic collide with the New York Knicks in the National Basketball Association Summer League on Thursday at the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas.

Game time is set at 8 a.m. (Manila time) with the 7-foot-3 Sotto keeping his fingers crossed, hoping to finally see some minutes that will give him an opportunity to display his talent that will land him a roster spot in the opening night of the 2023-2024 NBA Season in October.

Since being part of the Magic in the Summer League, Sotto has yet to see a single minute on the court.

Magic coach Dylan Murphy opted to keep the 21-year-old on the bench during their 78-89 loss to the Detroit Pistons in the opener as well as during their 85-108 setback to the Indiana Pacers last Tuesday, sparking an outrage among Filipino fans inside the arena.


‘I’m just trying to show the coaches that I’m a good teammate and that I’m a good player. I’ll be ready whenever they call my name. I’ll be a positive guy on the corner, on the bench.’


Worse, Murphy had a chance to deploy the Filipino as the Pacers pulled away early, but he still opted to go with draft picks and contracted players en route to absorbing their second straight setback.

Still, Sotto remains positive.

“I’m just trying to show the coaches that I’m a good teammate and that I’m a good player. I’ll be ready whenever they call my name. I’ll be a positive guy on the corner, on the bench,” Sotto said in a social media post.

Against the Knicks, Sotto is expected to bang bodies Dmytro Skapinstev and Isaiah Roby, who scored 12 points each in their previous game against the Brooklyn Nets.

Murphy, however, assured Sotto that he will soon have his time to shine.

“He’ll definitely get minutes. We’re just playing it by ear,” Murphy told United States-based journalist Homer Sayson after their game against the Pacers.

“He’s done a really good job in our practices. Everybody will get an opportunity but credit to him for having a good attitude and doing things the right way.”

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