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Celtics Name Nigerian 18th Head Coach In Franchise History

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The Boston Celtics have named seven-year NBA veteran, Ime Udoka the franchise’s subsequent head coach, making him the 18th head coach within the organisation’s 75-year historical past, Theundefeated.com studies

“I wish to welcome Ime, Nia, Kez, and Massai to the Boston Celtics. Among the many many excellent qualities that Ime brings to the desk are his character, humility, and competitiveness. He has a relentless work ethic and an unlimited array of experiences as a participant and coach,” mentioned Celtics President of Basketball Operations, Brad Stevens.



“He’s a pacesetter that’s heat and demanding, and we’re so excited that he has chosen to hitch us in pursuit of Banner 18.”

Udoka joins the Celtics franchise after spending the final 9 NBA seasons as an assistant coach between San Antonio (2012-13 to 2018-19), Philadelphia (2019-20), and Brooklyn (2020-21). 

Groups that Udoka has served as an assistant coach on have certified for the playoffs in all 9 seasons, with a kind of years leading to an NBA championship (Spurs, 2014).

Along with his teaching expertise within the NBA, Udoka was additionally an assistant coach for Gregg Popovich and the USA Basketball Males’s Nationwide Workforce in 2018.

He performed for the Nigerian males’s nationwide group in the course of the 2006 FIBA World Championship, the place he led the group in scoring, assists and steals, and was second in rebounds. He additionally performed for Nigeria in the course of the 2005 and 2011 FIBA Africa championships. Udoka and his sister, Mfon Udoka, who performed for the Nigerian girls’s nationwide group and within the WNBA for 3 seasons, had been the primary brother-sister pair to play in each the NBA and WNBA, in accordance with a 2006 report within the Los Angeles Occasions.

“It’s inspiring to see extra gamers, coaches and personnel, born in Africa or with direct ties to the continent, obtain alternatives throughout the league. Simply as Joel Embiid, Pascal Siakam and Serge Ibaka proceed to encourage the following technology of African gamers, Ime Udoka is a trailblazer for aspiring coaches from Nigeria and throughout the continent,” mentioned NBA Africa CEO Victor Williams.

Udoka’s basketball profession began at Utah State College Jap, the place Udoka recorded the primary triple-double at school historical past. After two seasons, Udoka transferred to the College of San Francisco, spending one season with the Dons earlier than ending his collegiate profession at Portland State.

After not being chosen within the 2000 NBA draft, which he has chalked as much as a knee harm on the finish of his senior season, Udoka frolicked within the NBA’s developmental league (now the G League), in France and Spain, and had transient stints with the Los Angeles Lakers and New York Knicks from 2003 to 2006.

Forward of the 2006-07 season, Udoka signed with the Portland Path Blazers, the place he began 75 video games. He remained within the league for 4 further seasons, with stops with the Sacramento Kings and most notably the Spurs, earlier than retiring from skilled basketball in 2012.

That very same yr, Udoka was employed as an assistant by the final NBA coach he performed for: the Spurs’ Gregg Popovich.

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