Boston Celtics head coach Ime Udoka is reportedly facing a significant suspension for having an inappropriate relationship with a team staffer.
ESPN first broke the news late Wednesday night that Udoka could be facing possible disciplinary action — “including a significant suspension” — for violating an unspecified team organizational guideline. Shortly after, The Athletic reported Udoka had “an improper and intimate consensual relationship with a female member of the team staff,” which violates the Celtics’ code of conduct.
An Udoka suspension appears imminent, with the only looming question being the length of his forthcoming absence. Udoka is not in danger of losing his job, but missing the entire 2022-23 season is on the table, according to ESPN. The World Wide Leader also reported that assistant coach Joe Mazzulla is “likely” to serve as interim coach.
Udoka took the Celtics job after spending one season as Steve Nash’s top assistant coach in Brooklyn. He quickly rose amongst the ranks as one of the NBA’s top tacticians and helped turn Boston into the NBA’s No. 1 defense in the second half of last season.
His Celtics swept the Nets out of the first round in the Eastern Conference playoffs and took a 2-1 series lead over the Golden State Warriors in the NBA Finals before ultimately losing the series in six games.
Udoka replaced former Celtics head coach Brad Stevens, who moved into a front office role after serving as head coach in Boston for eight seasons. He became the first rookie head coach to win multiple Game 7s in a playoff run — defeating both Milwaukee and Miami in win-or-go-home situations — and captained a 28-7 run in the second half of the season after the Celtics started .500.
BOJAN ON THE MOVE
Ex-Nets forward Bojan Bogdanovic is on the move once again.
The Bosnian forward finds himself in a trade that sends him from the Utah Jazz to the Detroit Pistons in exchange for Kelly Olynyk and Saben Lee.
Bogdanovic spent the first two-and-a-half seasons of his career playing for the Nets before Brooklyn traded him to the Washington Wizards for the 2017 first-round pick that became Jarrett Allen. The Pistons mark the fifth team in Boganovic’s career, and he is likely to play on a couple more squads before his career is over.