Suspended Boston Celtics head coach Ime Udoka’s fiancée, Nia Long, has offered a statement via TMZ declaring her support for the 45-year-old. Per Long’s rep, ‘the outpouring of love and support from family, friends and the community during this difficult time means so much.’
Her primary concern was not her open relationship with Udoka, given her comments about how marriage isn’t necessary for her to prove that she loves anyone, but her kids. She asked that her ‘privacy be respected as she processes the recent events.’
For what it’s worth, the father of Long’s first child and her ex, Massai Z. Dorsey, also supports Udoka, telling the DailyMail that they ‘talk as a family, and it’s all about unconditional love, and that’s what she’s giving him.’
Udoka was suspended for what was originally reported as a consensual relationship with a female staffer that violated the team’s personal conduct policy. In the weeks since the story broke on September 21, it’s been revealed that he slept with multiple women. It is believed that one of the women was the wife of a Boston Celtics minority owner and another was someone that booked Long’s flights.
The Boston Celtics do not need to deal with this situation
From the sounds of it, Ime Udoka and Nia Long would be a great fit in New York or Los Angeles given the nature of their relationship. At this point, given the damage done to the Boston Celtics organization — at the very least to one of the team’s owners and to the trust the team may have in Brad Stevens given Udoka was his first head coaching hire — the pair best belongs elsewhere.
Interim Celtics head coach Joe Mazzulla seems to have a good grip on this team from the wildly limited sample size we’ve seen, but more importantly, the team has become a hotspot for free agents. Attracting coaching talent won’t be the same challenge it was a year ago.
Perhaps the most disappointing aspect of all this is how much potential there was for the team under Udoka’s watch. His personal issues never reached the roster, who had respect for him and parlayed his influence into the franchise’s first NBA Finals in 14 years.