Ime Udoka, a Nigerian NBA coach who coaches Boston Celtics in the U.S is facing disciplinary measures for cheating on his wife with staff member of the club.
Udoka worked with the San Antonio Spurs, Philadelphia 76ers and Brooklyn Nets as an assistant coach after his NBA playing career before joining the Celtics as a head coach last summer.
The 45-year-old Nigerian has been married to Hollywood actress Nia Long since 2010.
ESPN reports that Udoka’s disciplinary action is expected to include a heavy suspension for partaking in a consensual, romantic relationship with a woman who works in the franchise.
On their part, The Athletic’s Shams Charania reports that Udoka’s misconduct involved an “improper intimate and consensual relationship” with a woman who was on the Celtics’ staff. The relationship was considered a violation of the organization’s guidelines, and a decision on the length of that suspension is expected to come as soon as Thursday.
While no final decision has been made, internal discussions have included scenarios that would keep Udoka out for the entirety of the 2022-23 season, sources said. It isn’t believed that Udoka’s job is in jeopardy.
Udoka replaced Brad Stevens as coach when Stevens moved up to be Boston’s president of basketball operations after his predecessor in the job, Danny Ainge, chose to leave the organization.
Udoka was impressive in his first season as coach and oversaw a remarkable turnaround in Boston, one that saw the Celtics go from being under 500 in late January to closing the season with a 28-7 record over their final 35 games. They went on to performed an impressive run through the Eastern Conference playoffs, advancing to the NBA Finals for the first time in 12 years.
Udoka is the fifth coach in the past 25 years to reach the NBA Finals in his first season as a head coach, and the first since Nick Nurse in 2019.