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Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Boston Celtics hire Brad Stevens as new head coach

Brad StevensThe Boston Celtics announced on Wednesday that they have hired Brad Stevens as their new head coach, replacing Doc Rivers.

The Celtics operated in completely stealth manner; there were no reports about them pursuing any candidates much less nearing a hire.

“Brad and I share a lot of the same values,” said Celtics President of Basketball Operations Danny Ainge in a press release issued by the team. “Though he is young, I see Brad as a great leader who leads with impeccable character and a strong work ethic. His teams always play hard and execute on both ends of the court. Brad is a coach who has already enjoyed lots of success, and I look forward to working with him towards Banner 18.”

Stevens, 36, will be the 17th coach in the franchise’s storied history. He spent the last six season as the coach of Butler University, leading the program to two national championship games. His 166 wins were the most of any coach in his first six years with a program.

Stevens was frequently mentioned as a top coaching candidate for numerous collegiate vacancies, including the UCLA job that went to Steve Alford, but he turned them all down to stay at Butler. This was too good of an opportunity to turn down.

“The Celtics team has offered Brad and his family a unique opportunity with which no university can compete,” the school’s president said.

“Our family is thrilled for the opportunity given to us by the leadership of the Boston Celtics, but it is emotional to leave a place that we have called home for the past 13 years,” Stevens said in a press release issued by the university.

Stevens is entering a tricky situation. The Celtics recently traded aging stars Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce, and Jason Terry to the Brooklyn Nets. Point guard Rajon Rondo is recovering from surgery to repair a torn ACL in his knee. The franchise is clearly rebuilding, and their only All-Star is Rondo, who is known for being a head case.

The Celtics are a storied franchise, but they’re likely headed for a few sub-par seasons in a row.

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