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The Brooklyn Nets have moved away from hiring Ime Udoka as head coach, instead promoting Jacque Vaughn.
Amid all of the controversies surrounding the Brooklyn Nets, the team and head coach Steve Nash agreed to part ways. Shortly after the news was announced, there were reports that the Nets were planning to hire Ime Udoka from the Boston Celtics. Udoka was suspended by the Celtics for the entirety of the 2022-23 season due to using crude language towards a female subordinate, who he later had an improper workplace relationship with.
Days later, the team decided to go in a different direction.
According to ESPN senior NBA insider Adrian Wojnarowski, the Nets decided to promote interim head coach Jacque Vaughn to replace Nash. They opted against bringing in Udoka.
Nets decide against hiring Ime Udoka as head coach, opt to promote Jacque Vaughn
Wojnarowski reported the reasons why the Nets pivoted away from Udoka. The first reason was the team has already dealt with backlash after Kyrie Irving promoted an antisemitic film on his Twitter account, ultimately leading to his suspension after failing to apologize on numerous opportunities. The second reason being the reaction they would receive for hiring Udoka due to having an improper relationship with a female subordinate with the Celtics.
As for why the Nets picked Vaughn, sources told Wojnarowski that once Vaughn “stabilized the team,” removing the interim title “made more sense to the organization.”
Vaughn has been with the Nets organization since 2016, serving as an assistant coach. Ultimately in the 2019-20 season, he was named the interim head coach after Kenny Atkinson left his position. In 10 regular season games as interim coach that year, Vaughn led Brooklyn to seven wins. In their playoff trip in the Orlando bubble, Brooklyn was swept in four games by the Toronto Raptors.
Following the hiring of Nash, Vaughn remained as an assistant on the staff.
In his four games as interim coach this season (prior to this writing), Brooklyn went 2-2, with their two wins coming against the Washington Wizards and Charlotte Hornets.
After all the talk of Udoka moving from Boston to Brooklyn, the Nets decided to stay in-house to find their next head coach. That head coach is Jacque Vaughn.