Suspended Boston Celtics Head Coach Ime Udoka has reportedly emerged as a “strong frontrunner” to become the next head coach of the Brooklyn Nets. ESPN’s Senior NBA Insider Adam Wojnarowski reports that Udoka and the Brooklyn Nets could finalize a deal within the next 24 to 48 hours. The Boston Celtics are expected to sign off on the transaction and allow their former head coach to pursue another job.
“The hope is that Udoka can tighten the Nets defensively and command the respect of [the] franchise’s key players. Udoka spent a season on Steve Nash’s staff before accepting the Celtics job and winning the Eastern Conference. With the suspension, his future in Boston was essentially over,” Wojnarowski tweeted.
Ime Udoka is a former NBA player who spent time with the New York Knicks, San Antonio Spurs, Sacramento Kings and Portland TrailBlazers. Following his playing career, he served as an assistant coach with the San Antonio Spurs, Philadelphia 76ers and Brooklyn Nets before becoming a head coach with the Boston Celtics. In his first season in Boston, the Celtics won the Atlantic Division and earned a spot in the 2022 NBA Finals. Months after his team fell short in the NBA Finals, Udoka was suspended for the 2022-2023 NBA season for violating team policies.
“[An] independent law firm probe into Boston Celtics coach Ime Udoka found that he used crude language in his dialogue with a female subordinate prior to the start of an improper workplace relationship with the woman,” Wojnarowski reported.
Udoka will likely step in as the Nets head coach following Steve Nash’s abrupt departure. In the meantime, Jacques Vaughn will serve as the team’s interim head coach. After a 2-5 start, the Kevin Durant-led squad currently sits in 12th place in the Eastern Conference.