Filipino basketball players

Kai Sotto set to mentor sports ‘beasts’ with new Kaiju Academy

JR Isaga

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Kai Sotto set to mentor sports ‘beasts’ with new Kaiju Academy

PROSPECT. Kai Sotto is set to see action in the NBA G League.

File photo by Paul Mata/Rappler

'It is a dream come true to mentor young athletes globally,' says 7-foot-2 Filipino standout Kai Sotto

Ever since his high school days, Kai Sotto always seemed to have a mind ahead of his time.

Sure enough, the 7-foot-2 NBA prospect proves exactly that to this day as he laid the groundwork for his new Kaiju Academy in Hamilton, Ohio.

Despite being just 18 years old himself, Sotto already envisions his sports school to be a training ground for other young phenoms like him, and he wants a hands-on approach to their growth.

“The idea is that the Kaiju Academy teaches these young athletes to play ‘like a beast’ on the court and to be amazing men and women off the court,” he told Forbes in an interview.

“I want young men and young women to get the right experience, development, exposure and mentorships to become their best true self both mentally and physically, and create an ecosystem of Kaijus that is healthy for all athletes and their families,” he continued.

Sotto, of all people, knows full well the value of specialized mentorship as he is currently learning from the best of the best with the NBA G League Ignite Team.

Even at a very young age, the former UAAP juniors MVP is already aiming to pay it forward by passing knowledge onto others who will greatly benefit from what he has learned. (READ: Kai Sotto likens his game to former Lakers star Pau Gasol)

“It is a dream come true to mentor young athletes globally,” Sotto said. “Kaiju is the Japanese term for monster, beast, strange creature, and it perfectly captures the ideal basketball competitor that I aim to be.”

“Basketball isn’t easy and sometimes, it will knock you down more than it builds you up,” he continued. “I wanted my brand and my Academy to be about resilience.”

Penciled in to open by late 2021, the Kaiju Academy is being built within Spooky Nook, a 1.3 million-square-foot sports facility in Hamilton.

It will feature more than 20 basketball courts, as well as football fields, an indoor rock climbing wall, an indoor track oval, batting cages, and an on-site hotel. –

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