43-year old Nigerian-American former professional basketball star, Ime Udoka is has made the NBA history of becoming the First Nigerian Head Coach with his set appointment with Boston Celtics.
According to the Associated Press, on Wednesday, the appointment was first reported by ESPN, even as the deal had not been officially announced by the club.
It was gathered that the club is currently negotiating with the Brooklyn Nets assistant and are already dotting the lines of a deal for him to assume the role.
Ime Udoka was one of the slew of players Nigeria had in the NBA, alongside the likes of the great Hakeem Olajuwon. Udoka represented Nigeria at two African Championships, one in Algeria, 2005 and Madagascar, 2011.
The 43-year old Nigerian-American also played at the 2006 FIBA World Championships. He played for the Philadelphia 76ers for a year before spending this past season on the Nets staff.
Sky Sports wrote in its report: “The Portland, Oregon, native played a total of 316 games over seven seasons, averaging 5.2 points and 2.9 rebounds per game while playing for the Los Angeles Lakers, New York Knicks, Portland Trail Blazers, Sacramento Kings and the Spurs, before retiring in 2012 and joining Popovich’s staff in San Antonio.
“He was with the Spurs for seven seasons, including in 2013-14, when they won the NBA title.”
Since he retired from playing basketball, Udoka has worked as a coach for a slew of NBA sides and the American national team. He worked under the great Gregg Popovich at Spurs and was recently an assistant coach at Brooklyn Nets.
After nine years of being an assistant coach, sources say the deal recruit him to join the Boston Celtics as the Head Coach is being finalized.
This appointment will makes Udoka the first Nigerian Head Coach in the National Basketball Association (NBA) history.