The Boston Celtics did not wait long to name their new head coach.
For several years, they were run by Brad Stevens.
However, Stevens decided to step away from that position to take over as the President of Basketball Operations.
Stevens did not have to take a long time for the head coach search.
They landed current Brooklyn Nets assistant coach, Ime Udoka.
The Boston Celtics are finalizing an agreement to hire Brooklyn Nets assistant Ime Udoka as the franchise's new coach, sources tell ESPN.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) June 23, 2021
This hire was met by a great response throughout the league.
However, some may not know who Udoka is.
He might have a familiar face to most, but he is a very under the radar type of individual.
Before he steps foot in Boston, here are three things you need to know about the new head coach of the Celtics.
3. He Is A Former Player
Udoka was not a standout player who you will remember.
He was still in the league for several years.
His most notable time in the NBA was with the San Antonio Spurs for a couple of seasons.
Having a former player as a head coach can be beneficial for teams.
Here’s how one coach who has worked with Ime Udoka described him to me:
“He listens to players and adjusts. It’s not his way or the highway. He has an edge, but he’s not a hard-ass. He’ll stand up to guys. He’s defensive-minded. He values toughness.” https://t.co/yxGFsVpQhl
— Jeff Goodman (@GoodmanHoops) June 23, 2021
They tend to have an easier time connecting with the players.
Udoka has played in high-pressure games.
He knows the grind of being a NBA player.
One of the hardest things for a head coach is gaining the trust of your players.
Not every former player that became a head coach was successful.
This is just a potential advantage to have, which Udoka has.
2. Players Vouched For Him
News came out saying how the key players on the Celtics wanted him as their head coach.
Per a source, Boston Celtics All-Stars Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown, as well as longest-tenured Celtic Marcus Smart gave Brad Stevens their stamp approval on the Ime Udoka hire. Source said: "Udoka is the guy their main guys wanted and Stevens got him before anyone else could."
— Keith Smith (@KeithSmithNBA) June 23, 2021
That says a lot.
Every player that has been around Udoka has nothing but nice things to say about the man.
The Celtics roster already trusts him for the future.
That speaks volumes.
You want a head coach that the team can get behind.
The players need to be able to connect and trust their coach to do the right thing.
Udoka has the stamp of approval that you do not see so often.
He and the Celtics players will have a great relationship from the beginning.
1. Udoka Has Learned From The Best
As a player and coach, Udoka has been under the tutelage of some great coaches.
He has also been around great players throughout his NBA career.
The one person he has been around the most is one of the greatest coaches of all time.
That coach is Gregg Popovich.
Popovich has a long coaching tree and Udoka is one of them.
He is one of the many that are now a head coach as well.
Popovich is by far one of the best minds basketball has seen.
Udoka not only played for him, but was on his coaching staff for several years.
He has learned all you need to know from Popovich.
To use what he has learned from a great head coach can do wonders for a team.
Studying is the best way to get yourself prepared for the biggest test of your coaching career.NEXT: 3 Worst Moves Danny Ainge Made With Boston Celtics