Nia Long Comments After Fiancé Ime Udoka Is Suspended From Celtics

Nia Long broke her silence after her fiancé, Ime Udoka, was suspended for the 2022-2023 season as head coach of the Boston Celtics for violating team policies. See what the actress had to say below

Nia Long and Ime Udoka
Paul Archuleta/FilmMagic

Nia Long is ready to speak out about the drama surrounding her fiancé, Ime Udoka.

Following Ime's suspension as head coach of the Boston Celtics for violating team rules, the "Best Man" actress shared a statement, via her rep Shannon Barr, thanking everyone for their love during this time.

"The outpouring of love and support from family, friends and the community during this difficult time means so much to me," she said in a statement to E! News on Friday. "I ask that my privacy be respected as I process the recent events. Above all, I am a mother and will continue to focus on my children."

Long's statement comes one day after the Celtics announced Udoka would be suspended for the upcoming 2022-2023 basketball season for "violations of team policies" in a Sept. 22 statement.

"A decision about his future with the Celtics beyond this season will be made at a later date," the organization added. "The suspension takes effect immediately."

Hours before the team's statement, ESPN, citing multiple sources, reported that Udoka was facing disciplinary action for allegedly having "an intimate relationship with a female member of the franchise's staff."

Following the Celtics' announcement, Udoka issued an apology and took accountability for his actions. "I want to apologize to our players, fans, the entire Celtics organization, and my family for letting them down," he said in a statement to ESPN reporter Malika Andrews Sept. 22. "I am sorry for putting the team in this difficult situation, and I accept the team's decision."

The coach added, "Out of respect for everyone involved, I will have no further comment." 

Long and Udoka met in 2010 and got engaged five years later. The couple shares a 10-year-old son, Kez Sunday Udoka, and the "Fatal Affair" actress is also mom to son Massai Dorsey II from a previous relationship. 

Though Long and Udoka tend to keep things low-profile, the "Friday" actress sent a supportive message to her fiancé when his team advanced to the NBA finals in May, writing, "Speechless....patience and purpose. #blessedandgrateful."

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