Celtics To Hire Nets Assistant Ime Udoka As Head Coach

The Celtics are finalizing a deal to hire Nets assistant Ime Udoka as their next coach, per Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.<a rel=Ime Udoka” width=”300″ height=”183″ />

Udoka, 43, was an assistant under Steve Nash for just one season. But he has plenty of experience, serving as an assistant with the 76ers in 2019-20, and for seven years with Gregg Popovich and the Spurs before that.

Jay King of The Athletic reported that the Celtics were leaning toward hiring a coach with NBA playing experience, and Udoka fits the profile. He was a small forward with the Lakers in 2004, then spent time with the Knicks, Trail Blazers, Spurs and Kings from 2006-11. He also played extensively overseas.

The Celtics have undergone a bit of a shakeup after finishing a disappointing 36-36. Former coach Brad Stevens is now the president of basketball operations, replacing longtime former executive Danny Ainge.

Other reported candidates for the job included Mike D’Antoni, Udoka’s fellow assistant with the Nets, as well as Bucks assistant Charles Lee and Clippers assistant Chauncey Billups.

Udoka “separated himself quickly” from the rest of the field after earning the support of members of the Celtics roster, Wojnarowski added.

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