Ime Udoka is the new head coach of the Boston Celtics, and the team recently just won its first game of the season. And while the players seem to love Udoka, his No. 1 fan is his fiancée, Hollywood superstar Nia Long. PopCulture.com recently caught up with Long who shared her reaction when she learned that Udoka was hired by the Celtics.
"I'll never forget the moment," Long told PopCulture. "We were sort of waiting for the call all week. I was anxious. He's always calm, like totally calm. I'm cleaning, folding laundry, cooking, because I'm just so nervous. I had to keep myself busy. And I was on a call and I got off the call. I was actually on a call about The Best Man and I got off the call. And I looked down the hallway and he just smiled and shook his head in the yes position. And I ran down the hall and jumped on him. And I think I almost, probably, broke his back. Extra 15 from COVID is not easy to catch."
Before landing the role in Boston, Udoka was an assistant coach with the Brooklyn Nets. He also spent time with the Philadelphia 76ers and the San Antonio Spurs. Udoka and Long started dating when he was still an NBA player, and the couple got engaged when he was a Spurs assistant coach in 2015.
But will Long make an appearance at the Celtics game in the near future? "Oh my gosh. I'll try to be there as much as I can. He'll be in Boston. I'm in New York City because we'll be shooting Best Man here. The most important thing for me is that we keep our family as together as we possibly can. He's going to be super busy. We both have beautiful careers and the thing that I think makes it work for us is we give each other the space and time to do what we have to do individually, as well as together."
After being an assistant for nine years, Udoka gets his shot at 44 years old, and Long is very excited for him to be the head coach of one of the most prestigious franchises in all of sports. "I'm so happy for him. I think he's going to kill it," Long said. "He's one of the most disciplined people I know. He's worked really hard for this and now he's got to just get to work with his players and do what he does best. So, it's an exciting time for our family to be able to sit in the stands. And now it's like, oh my gosh, he's the head coach. And I met him when he was a player and I've seen him go through three different teams. And so, now it's his turn. So it's good."