On the day the 2022 KBL rookie draft was held, Kyunghee University coach Kim Hyun-guk had the opportunity to send four students to the pros. But he couldn’t help but smile. This is because Lee Sa-seong, a disciple who has been with him for a long time, could not participate in the draft.
Lee Sa-seong, who is from China like Kim Chul-wook (KGC), came to Korea dreaming of a ‘Korean Dream’. As a 210 cm big man, he was evaluated as a player who will be responsible for the goal of Korean basketball when he entered Kyunghee University.
However, unlike Kim Chul-wook, Lee Sa-seong could not participate in the draft. He should have acquired Korean citizenship, but he couldn’t find a way. Director Kim tried to adopt the surname Lee, as in the past, but he was not allowed as adoption-related laws changed. It was impossible to become a special naturalization target like Laguna. I found a way in many ways, but in the end, Isa-seong was unable to participate in the draft.
KBL was also aware of the existence of Lee Sa-sung, but there was no movement to change. Even after becoming a KBL player, there was a case like Park Seung-ri who left without acquiring Korean citizenship, so the rule that only Koreans can participate in the draft was followed.
Director Kim worked hard for Lee Director until the last moment. However, KBL’s position did not change and other methods could not be realized, so he could not help his student’s dream.
Now that some time has passed, where and how is Lee Sa-sung playing basketball? Director Kim said, “I went back to China at the end of December. He plans to be tested by a second division team. If it goes well, I think he will be able to play next season.” 안전놀이터
“I will be building my body now. They said they would like to come whenever they were called from Korea.”
Director Kim said that he received a handwritten letter from Lee Sa-seong on the day he left. The letter was filled with Hangeul handwritten by Lee Sa-seong. After sending handwritten letters to coach Kim, his coaches, and players one by one, he returned to China.
Lee Sa-seong’s handwritten letter to director Kim contained several stories. After coming to Korea from China, it was not easy to adapt to the culture, the times of wandering, and the help of director Kim who was able to overcome difficulties, and was full of affection for him. He also said that he followed Director Kim like a father by writing an article that said, ‘A teacher for a day, a father for a lifetime’, which seems to mean the military department. It is Isaseong who realized all of this too late and left a note saying that he was sorry and regretful.
Director Kim said, “(Lee) gave a long handwritten letter and left. He writes very well. It was so touching and I almost cried… “I was lost for words.
For director Kim, Lee Sa-seong was a disciple he cherished in his heart. Many things happened while they were together, but in the end, it is Director Kim who took off his feet to help his student achieve his dream. The drama they wrote did not end with a happy ending, but ended with a heartwarming story.
Meanwhile, director Kim said that he will meet Lee Sa-seong in February. Although they are not tied to Kyung Hee University anymore, it will be a meeting where they can reveal their sincerity even more.