Ron Harper Jr. made Filipinos proud when he was signed to a two-way contract by the Toronto Raptors before the 2022-2023 NBA season. Toronto, a city with a deeply diverse community and rich Filipino culture, has accepted the Filipino-American rookie, who is the son of former NBA player Ron Harper.
In honor of Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage month, the Toronto Raptors featured Ron Harper Jr. on their Instagram page and the young forward discussed his favorite Filipino dish and shouted out his lola’s cooking. Watch the video below to learn more about Ron’s love for chicken adobo and his lola’s cooking!
Photo Courtesy of Ron Harper Jr.’s Instagram
With the NBA playoffs set in high gear, the Draft is right around the corner. Three Filipino athletes have declared for the NBA draft and taking their shot to enter the League. The three hopefuls are Las Piñas native and Australia’s National Basketball League athlete, Kai Sotto, Kentucky Jayhawks point guard Remy Martin, and Rutgers Scarlet Knights forward Ron Harper Jr.
The 2022 NBA Draft is underway with a total of 283 players who are early entry candidates– 247 from colleges and 36 international players who are looking to take the next step in their careers. Although this is the information on early entry candidates, expect to see more news coming soon like the three Filipino athletes declaring for draft night. The event is set to for June 23rd at Barclays Center in New York. Lets take a look at the profiles of the three Filipino hopefuls.
The 19 year old, seven-foot-two center born in the Philippines currently plays for the Australian NBL with the Adelaide 36ers. Before playing in Australia, he was part of the Ateneo Blue Eaglets of the University Athletic Association of the Philippines (UAAP) then moving to The Skill Factory (TSF) in Atlanta, Georgia. Also, Sotto was considered a four-star recruit among many NCAA Division I programs in the U.S. In 2020, he joined the NBA G League Ignite and opted out of collegiate eligibility. Due to commitments with playing for the Philippine National Team and the situation regarding the pandemic, Sotto was unable to return to the G-League and couldn’t declare for the Draft until this year.
A current NCAA champion, the Kansas Jayhawks point guard had a solid super-senior year going all the way in the March tournament. The California native is a three-time All-Pac-12 selection, making him the second player in Arizona State Univeristy history to be named all-league three times. The ASU transfer is going all in with the 2022 Draft as he withdrew during the 2020 and 2021 seasons to continue his collegiate career. In 2022, Martin averaged 8.6 points, 3 rebounds, and 2.5 assists.
Ron Harper Jr.
The six-foot-six Junior from New Jersey decided to forgo his senior year of collegiate eligibility with the Rutgers Scarlet Knights. Although the Knights had a short end to the tournament, Harper Jr. made an impact on the court. Throughout his collegiate career, he went from a two-star prospect to an All-American. The shooting guard / small forward had an impressive last season with an average of 15.8 points, 5.9 rebounds, and 1.9 assists for the season. The son of previous Los Angeles Lakers player, Ron Harper Sr. is said to be projected as a second-round selection.