PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Boston Celtics head coach and Portland native Ime Udoka has been suspended by the organization for the 2022-23 NBA season.
The news was first reported by The Athletic’s Shams Charania.
Udoka, who is engaged to actress Nia Long, reportedly had an intimate and consensual relationship with a Celtics staff member.
“I want to apologize to our players, fans, the entire Celtics organization and my family for letting them down. I am sorry for putting the team in this difficult situation and I accept the team’s decision. Out of respect for everyone involved, I will have no further comment,” Udoka said in a statement.
Udoka graduated from Jefferson High School in 1995 before going on to play college basketball for three different programs, including Portland State in 1999-2000. Udoka also played for five NBA teams over a seven-year period — he was a member of the Portland Trail Blazers in the 2006-07 season.
After a decade as an assistant coach, Udoka took over as the head coach for the Celtics in 20221-22, leading them to the NBA Finals, where they lost to the Golden State Warriors in six games. A decision about his future with the organization past the 2022-23 season “will be made at a later date,” according to the team.