The Boston Celtics have had quite the week.
First the team stated that Robert Williams, one of their star players, might miss the beginning of the season.
As if that wasn’t bad enough, a massive bombshell was dropped on Wednesday when it was revealed that head coach Ime Udoka was facing disciplinary action after having a consensual romantic relationship with a female staff member, violating the team’s regulations.
— Boston Celtics (@celtics) September 23, 2022
The team’s official ruling came down on Thursday when the front office said that Udoka was in fact suspended from his position for the entire 2022-23 season.
That’s a harsh punishment for the superstar coach who just brought the team to the Finals during his first year.
However, when you look closely at the statement released by the Celtics, you see a peculiar comment that should get attention.
The Celtics said, “a decision about his future with the Celtics beyond this season will be made at a later date.”
That suggests that Udoka might not ever come back to the team and may have already coached his last game for Boston.
The Celtics are leaving their options open.
They might bring Udoka back at the start of the 2023-24 season following the end of his suspension.
But the team might also decide to leave him behind and never welcome him back to the team.
Imagine if the Celtics have another banner season under interim coach Joe Mazzulla and return to the Finals, or even get close.
Perhaps they would be wise to permanently relieve Udoka of his position and just slide Mazzulla into the role full-time.
The Celtics are about to prove what they can achieve without Udoka.
If they do well, he might not ever come back.