The Brooklyn Nets apparently have their replacement for Steve Nash all lined up. After it was reported that Brooklyn was interested in potentially bringing suspended Boston Celtics head coach Ime Udoka on board to take over in the aftermath of Nash’s departure on Tuesday afternoon, multiple reports indicate that a deal will be finalized in the next day or two.
Both Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN and Shams Charania of The Athletic bring word that Brooklyn’s brain trust has made up its mind on Udoka, who served as an assistant coach with the team during Nash’s first year at the helm in 2020-21. Wojnarowski brought word that the Celtics will let Udoka leave for the gig, while Charnia noted that Boston is not expected to ask for any sort of compensation.
Suspended Celtics coach Ime Udoka has emerged as the likely next Brooklyn Nets head coach and his hiring could be finalized as soon as the next 24-to-48 hours, sources tell ESPN. Celtics will let him leave for another job.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) November 1, 2022
The Brooklyn Nets plan to hire Ime Udoka as their new head coach, sources tell @TheAthletic @Stadium. Boston granted the Nets permission to speak to Udoka and will allow him to leave freely, sources said. https://t.co/lFeHY8hUiS
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) November 1, 2022
After leading the Celtics to the NBA Finals last year, Udoka was suspended indefinitely during the offseason amid allegations of an affair and inappropriate conduct with a staffer. While the team does not have a full-time replacement, Boston has a 4-2 record at this early point in the season under interim head coach Joe Mazzulla.
Brooklyn has gotten out to a 2-5 start to the regular season. Beyond his ties to both Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving from his year as an assistant, Udoka worked as an assistant coach for the Philadelphia 76ers during the 2019-20 campaign with Ben Simmons.