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Ime Udoka Releases Statement As Celtics Announce His Suspension

Sports Illustrated logo Sports Illustrated 6 days ago Jelani Scott
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The organization suspended the head coach for a year following reports of his alleged involvement in an “improper” relationship with a female staffer.

Ime Udoka has released a statement apologizing for his actions after receiving a one-year suspension from the Celtics.

The organization announced Thursday Udoka, 45, has been suspended for the entire 2022–23 season for “violating team policies.” The discipline comes on the heels of a Wednesday report from The Athletic concerning the Celtics coach’s alleged involvement in an “improper” consensual relationship with a female member of the team’s staff.

In a statement shared on Twitter by ESPN’s Malika Andrews, Udoka apologized to Celtics players, the organization and fans for his actions, and expressed remorse for the events that led to the decision.

“I want to apologize to our players, fans, the entire Celtics organization, and my family for letting them down,” Udoka said. “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.”

The 2022–23 season was set to be Udoka’s second at the helm after he took over for Brad Stevens last June. Stevens, the Celtics’ coach for the past eight seasons, transitioned from the sidelines into a role as president of basketball operations following Danny Ainge’s brief retirement.

Udoka, a former player who spent 10 years as an assistant before arriving in Boston, led the Celtics to a 51–31 record and their first NBA finals appearance in 12 years.

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