Ime Udoka fired soon by the Boston Celtics?

Ime Udoka fired soon by the Boston Celtics?

Although training camps will start in a few days and the regular season should start in less than a month, an earthquake has just shaken Boston: Ime Udoka, the coach of the Celtics, could receive a heavy suspension for having had an intimate relationship with a woman who is part of the franchise staff, knowing that the interested party has been engaged for several years with Nia Long. Ambient.

This is news that the Boston franchise would have done well.

Normally, the end of September corresponds to the period in which the orange ball begins to assert itself: mid-day, training camp, pre-season… in short, we can go back to talking about basketball and leave behind the different sagas of the summer. . But at the Celtics, an off-the-field issue has taken center stage: According to Adrian Wojnarowski ofESPN and Shams Charania of the athletic, Coach Ime Udoka was caught in the act of having a relationship with a franchise employee on staff. Une « relation intime et consensuelle » si l’on en croit les deux principaux insiders NBA, le mot-clé étant ici « consensuelle » car cela écarte tout de suite l’hypothèse d’aggression/harcèlement venant d’Udoka envers la personne en Question.

However, and to start the case from a purely legal point of view, this action would be a violation of the rules of the Boston franchise.

We are not only faced here with a violation of the franchise regulations regarding relations between employees, but above all with a case that has nuances as numerous as it is varied.

  1. Ime Udoka is the coach of one of the most mythical franchises in the NBA and from which he also participated in the final against the Golden State Warriors. Thus, he represents one of the big faces of the Celtics today with stars Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown, as well as head of basketball operations Brad Stevens.
  2. Ime Udoka has been engaged to famous actress Nia Long since 2015, and the couple had a son in 2011. Suffice to say, we have a well-established relationship in the public sphere.
  3. We are talking here about America, the Zétazuni, a country that more than once has shown its inconsistency in public office but has been linear in its vision of puritanism, leaving very few opportunities for those who, in a position of public representation, tarnish the image of the ideal family.

For all of these reasons, there’s no question that Ime Udoka will be promptly penalized by the Celtics, but at what level of severity?

Next suspension of Ime Udoka

This sanction could drop as soon as this Thursday, if we are to believe ESPN. The sooner the better, because we know that this type of business can weigh very quickly within an organization if a decision is not made quickly. But what kind of punishment? A simple touch on the fingers? Or a more or less long suspension? A direct dismissal?

Based on the hallway noise coming straight from Boston, the Celtics would opt for the suspension, the length of which remains to be seen. Obviously, and it is the Woj who just threw it, there is a scenario where Udoka does not train the entire 2022-23 season. The Celtics, by virtue of their status and the very publicity of this matter, are well aware that their decision on the 45-year-old coach will be scrutinized and discussed throughout the NBA, even more so after Robert Sarver’s matter that -although radically different- has not been a management model by the league.

In the event of a suspension that prevents Ime Udoka from carrying out his duties for the entirety of the 2022-23 season, one obviously wonders who can sit in the seat vacated by the latter.

No no no, forget it right now, chief of basketball operations Brad Stevens is not coming down from the offices to resume dugout duty, not even as an interim. And, of course, it’s hard to see the Celtics hiring a new coach on a limited-time basis, because it’s really not in the interest of the franchise or the coach in question. Therefore, Boston should logically turn to one of Udoka’s assistants, and according to ESPN a certain Joe Mazzulla would hold the rope. Joe who? Joe Mazzulla, only 34 years old and with little experience as a coach. He certainly spent ten years in the guise of an assistant coach, from NCAA Division II to the NBA to the G League with the Maine Red Claws. But Mazzulla only has two years as a head coach on his resume, and that was at tiny Fairmont State (2017-19). Hello the split if he takes control of the latest NBA finalist.

A 2022-23 season that starts badly for the Celtics

A few weeks ago, all the lights were green in Boston. The Celtics had just come out of the NBA Finals after a spectacular rise that began in early 2022, and the club franchise had made a great signing with the arrival of leader Malcolm Brogdon but also that of Danilo Gallinari. In short, everything seemed to be aligned to be able to confirm this season and settle among the great favorites for the title. And then the tiles came together. September 2, 2022: We learn that Gallinari’s knee injury suffered with Italy before the start of the EuroBasket corresponds to a torn knee ligament. September 20, 2022: breaking news, center Robert Williams III will have to go back into surgery to repair his knee and will have to miss the first installments of the next regular season. And so September 21, 2022 : Ime Udoka is in crisis, which leaves uncertainty about the situation around the identity of the coach for next year. All this, to which we can also add the rumors this summer about a possible transfer of Kevin Durant involving Jaylen Brown (which by the way did not please the latter too much), is obviously far from ideal a few days before training camp and media day.

Whatever happens next, this issue can only weaken, at least initially, Ime Udoka’s position at the helm of the Celtics’ team. A well-respected leader in the Boston locker room, and author of a remarkable first season on the Greens’ bench punctuated by qualification for the NBA Finals, Udoka had perfectly justified choosing Brad Stevens to bet on a rookie coach like him, and this despite a somewhat rocky start to the early part of last season. Now this case will follow him and the Celtics can only move forward when Ime has served a suspension severe enough that they can all move forward.

Ime Udoka in crisis, the Celtics in trouble, all this just days before training camp resumes. Now we are waiting to see what decision the Boston franchise will make regarding their coach, but it is clear that, regardless of the sanction, we have better prepared ourselves for an NBA season.

Text sources: ESPN


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