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AP source: Celtics considering suspension of Ime Udoka

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BOSTON (TN) — The Boston Celtics are planning to discipline coach Ime Udoka, possibly with suspension, because of an inappropriate relationship with a member of the organization, two people with knowledge of the matter told the Today Nation News Thursday.

People spoke to the TN on condition of anonymity because the current Eastern Conference champions have not publicly disclosed any details. The exact sentence, including the length of the possible suspension, has not been determined.

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One of the people the TN spoke with said the Celtics have decided that assistant coach Joe Majulla will take over the team on an interim basis if Udoka is suspended.

ESPN first reported on Wednesday night that a suspension is under consideration for breach of team policy. ESPN and The Athletic later reported that the Celtics’ investigation revolved around whether Udoka had an inappropriate relationship with any member of the organization.

Losing Udoka would be a significant blow to a team that is widely regarded as one of the contenders for the NBA title this season, after falling only two games short of winning the championship last season in its first year.

The Celtics inaugurated the training camp on Tuesday. If Udoka – who finished fourth in the NBA Coach of the Year balloting last season – will not be allowed to lead the team, it will add to the issues the club was facing at the start of formal practices. Is.

Boston made some big moves early in the off-season, acquiring Malcolm Brogdon in a trade from Indiana to bolster an already strong backcourt, then adding sharpshooting veteran forward Danilo Gallinari as a free agent.

But last month, Gallinari tore an ACL in his left knee and will be lost for the season to come. Center Robert Williams, a key part of Boston’s defensive plan, who battled knee problems during last season’s playoffs, is still battling knee problems and is not expected to be ready to start this season. Is.

The Celtics were also prominently mentioned in the trade speculation surrounding Brooklyn forward Kevin Durant, a perennial All-Star who was wanted by the Nets to move elsewhere – then withdrew that demand after several weeks.

And now comes the case of Udoka.

Mazulla interviewed this summer for a Utah Jazz coaching job, a position that eventually went to Will Hardy, one of Udoka’s assistants in Boston last season. Udoka’s other assistant coaches are Damon Stoudemire, Ben Sullivan, Aaron Miles and Tony Dobbins.

Udoka had a great first season as the Celtics’ coach, ending the regular season 51–31 – leading 26-6 in the final 32 games – and driving Boston to Brooklyn, Milwaukee on the way to the NBA Finals. And overtakes Miami. The Celtics lost the title series in six games to the Golden State Warriors.

It is the second major disciplinary situation in the NBA in as many weeks, following a decision last week by commissioner Adam Silver to suspend Robert Sarver — owner of the Phoenix Suns and the WNBA’s Phoenix Mercury — for a year and after an investigation into him by $ 10 million fined. Showed its own pattern of disturbing workplace conduct, including abusive and racist language. Sarwar said on Wednesday that he intends to sell his teams.

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Reynolds reported from Miami.

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