This was messy AF!
Days after Boston Celtics’ head coach Ime Udoka was suspended for the entire 2022-23 season on Friday following an affair with a front-of-house staff member (which is against team policies), more details are now coming to light about how exactly the scandal was exposed. And it proves how complicated this situation was!
According to a source who spoke with ET on Sunday, the unnamed female employee was also in a very serious relationship! While Ime was cheating on his long-time fiancée Nia Long, she was cheating on her HUSBAND! Worst of all, it sounds like he was the one who discovered the affair in the first place. Per the insider, the staffer once took a call from Ime outside her home — but the private conversation was allegedly picked up by a doorbell camera, thus exposing the infidelity! Wowza. Rookie mistake if we’ve ever heard one!
The insider went on to insist Nia was blindsided by the cheating scandal, which she had no idea about until the team announced her partner’s suspension. Yeesh. It was especially difficult news since she knew and worked with the employee! While they weren’t exactly friends, Nia and the female staff member had spoken multiple times. Per a TMZ confidant, the staffer’s duties included booking work-related travel for Ime. Sometimes, she’d also book travel arrangements for Nia to come to Boston or road games.
Most upsetting of all?! She was helping the actress make plans to move to Boston permanently! And all of this communication would have been happening amid the investigation, which Ime (and likely the staffer) was well aware of! Ouch. As we previously reported, the Friday alum and the couple’s 10-year-old son, Kez, arrived in the city just over two weeks ago. The parents were reportedly house hunting. But now, ET’s insider insists Nia’s packing up to leave amid the affair. No surprise there!
Nia’s not the only one scrambling to wrap her head around this massive change. The Celtics have also been left in shambles just weeks before their first game. During a press conference on Friday, team president Brad Stevens got choked up relaying the impact of the affair news on the team — specifically the other female staff.
At this time, the cheating co-worker’s name has not been made public (though Nia has been informed, per TMZ), but that hasn’t stopped fans from speculating. Turns out this is causing a lot of stress on the other employees, he shared:
“We have a lot of talented women in our organization and I thought yesterday was really hard on them.”
Bashing Twitter speculation about who had the affair with the head coach, he continued:
“We as an organization have a responsibility to make sure we’re there to support them now cause a lot of people were dragged unfairly into this.”
Oof. Not cool for people to be calling out innocent women! You can see the press conference (below).
Whoa… Brad was about to cry! Was this affair even more serious than they’re letting on?? Or is he truly that upset for his other staff?
Meanwhile, Ime’s stayed tight-lipped about the controversy since his apology on Friday. At the time, ESPN’s Malika Andrews released the coach’s statement on social media, which read:
“I want to apologize to our players, fans, the entire Celtics organization, and my family for letting them down. I am sorry for putting the team in this difficult situation, and I accept the team’s decision. Out of respect for everyone involved, I will have no further comment.”
Hmm. We’re really feeling for Nia and the woman’s husband! What a terrible situation to be wrapped up in. Reactions, Perezcious readers?