Celtics coach Emi Odoka has been suspended for the duration of the 2022–23 season, The team announced Thursday evening. The moves follow a report of his alleged involvement in an “inappropriate” consensual relationship with a member of the team’s staff.
The Celtics released a statement confirming that Odoka, 45, had received a one-year suspension for “violations of team policies” and indicated that a decision on his future with the club after next season would be made “at a later time”. The suspension will take effect immediately, per team.
in Statement shared by ESPN’s Malika Andrews on TwitterOdoka has issued an apology to Celtics players, the organization, and fans for his actions.
“I want to apologize to our players, the fans, the entire Celtics organization, and my family for letting them down,” Odoka said. “I am sorry to put the team in this difficult situation, and I accept the team’s decision. Out of respect for all involved, I will have no further comment.”
Soon after the announcement, Sports IllustratedStaff Chris Mannix provided an update on where things are in regards to Odoka’s standing with the squad. I mentioned Manix was there NO WARRANTIES FOR Oduka In his conversations with the team about bringing him back after suspension.
Thursday’s announcement represents the organization’s first comments on the situation since reports emerged Wednesday night that Odoka faced possible disciplinary action for violating team rules. ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski The news was reported for the first timenoting that Boston was considering a “significant suspension” of Udoka for an “unspecified violation of regulatory guidelines.” the athleteLater, Shams Charania reported that Odoka had violated the Boston Code of Conduct by engaging in “Inappropriate and consensual intimacy” with an employee.
In the hours after the news broke, Wojnarowski reported that Udoka would likely be suspended for the duration of next season due to the relationship. Mannix reported Thursday that looming discipline led Odoka to this Consider stepping down from the positionalthough TNT’s Chris Haynes later mentioned that Udoka would don’t quit Despite the allegations.
As of Thursday night, details of Odoka’s actions are still unknown.
With Odoka now officially suspended, assistant coach Joe Mazzola will be interim coach, per Wojnarowski. Mazzola, a senior Boston assistant, has never held a key position as an NBA coach, and previously worked as a coach for the Celtics’ summer league team.
Odoka, who played seven seasons in the NBA before retiring in 2012, coached the Celtics after stints as an assistant with Tottenham, 76ers and the Nets. Udoka took the role before the 21-22 season after Stephens, the Boston coach for eight seasons, transitioned to the position of Chief Basketball Operations after Danny Inge briefly retired. The head coach of the year led the Celtics to second place in the Eastern Conference in the regular season and their first appearance in the NBA Finals in 12 years, losing in six games to the Warriors.
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