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Ime Udoka: Former Nigeria basketball star named Boston Celtics coach

Post created on June 29, 2021

Former Nigeria basketball international Ime Udoka has been named as the new coach of the Boston Celtics in the NBA.

The 43-year-old was recruited by the Celtics’ outgoing head coach Brad Stevens, who has been promoted to the team’s president of basketball operations to replace Danny Ainge.

Udoka arrives in Boston after stints as an assistant coach with the San Antonio Spurs, the Philadelphia 76ers and most recently the Brooklyn Nets, all of whom reached the play-offs during his time with them.

The US-born Udoka becomes the first Nigerian-American to be appointed as a head coach in the NBA.

He represented Nigeria in international competition throughout his playing career, earning bronze medals in 2005 and 2011 at the African Championships.

Stevens is convinced that Udoka is the right man to take over from him.

In addition to his coaching experience in the NBA, Udoka was also an assistant coach for Gregg Popovich and the USA Basketball Men’s National Team in 2018.

Udoka played 12 years of professional basketball, including seven seasons in the NBA from 2003-04 to 2010-11, as he played for 316 career games with San Antonio, Portland, Sacramento, New York, and the Los Angeles Lakers.

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