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The Boston Celtics on Thursday fired head coach Ime Udoka for the 2022-23 season “for a violation of team policy.” A statement issued by the party.

“A decision regarding his future with the Celtics beyond this season will be made at a later date,” the Celtics said in a statement. “The suspension is effective immediately.”

Udoka had a consensual relationship with a female Celtics employee, a person familiar with the situation told USA TODAY Sports. The person requested anonymity because they are not authorized to speak about the sensitive nature of the matter

Assistant coach Joe Majulla will serve as interim coach, according to ESPN.

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“I want to apologize to our players, fans, the entire Celtics organization and my family for letting them down,” Udoka said in a statement released to ESPN. “I regret putting the team in this difficult situation, and I accept the team’s decision. Out of respect for all involved, I will not comment further.”

Udoka, 45, is considered one of the top-rated coaches in the league. In his first season as the Celtics’ coach in 2021–22, he led them to a 51–31 record and the Eastern Conference Championship before losing to the Golden State Warriors in the Finals.

Ime Udoka led the Celtics to the NBA Finals in his first season as head coach.

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The Celtics were 23-24 on Jan. 21 and have won 28 of their last 35 games, the second seed in the East. Boston defeated Milwaukee in seven games in the second round and Miami in seven games in the conference finals.

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Udoka is credited with instilling a defense-first mentality and players have even bought into his fiery and demanding style. He’s not afraid to yell at players during a game or criticize their play in the media after a game.



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