The Boston Celtics Coach Emi Odoka is likely to be suspended throughout the 2022-23 season, According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. Odoka had an “improper, intimate and consensual relationship” with an employee who violated the team’s code of conduct, Shams Al Shaaraniya Athlete Reported late Wednesday.
Assistant Coach Joe Mazzola will likely be named interim coach, per ESPNwith an announcement expected on Thursday.
Training suspensions are extremely rare in the NBA. Washington Wizards Assistant Mike Batiste had two matches suspended last season for entering the stands, and Mike Budenholzer and Jason Kidd each received one match suspension for in-game behavior. A prolonged suspension of a coach, especially a coach imposed by the team, would be unprecedented.
Odoka took charge of coaching the Celtics last season as head coach for the first time, and despite his 23-24 start, he managed to rally the team to a 28-7 finalist and final in the NBA Finals. The Celtics came up short, but were set to enter this season as the bookmaker’s favorite to win the championship.
With Udoka’s status unclear, that could easily change. This is the latest issue to hit Boston in what has become a tumultuous off-season. Star striker Jaylen Brown has publicly commented on the trade rumors involving himself and Brooklyn Networks Star Kevin Durant. Free agent who signed his AFC Champions League deals was torn apart by Danilo Galinari while playing for Italy. Poking center Robert Williams III is recovering from knee surgery and is expected to miss training camp.
Now, the Celtics may be without their coach for an important part of the season. If it’s already over, Boston’s road to a frequent trip to the Finals gets even more dangerous.