AP Photo/Winslow Townson
Boston Celtics reporter Amanda Pflugrad is speaking up about the “disgusting” coverage of the allegations against Ime Udoka both in the media and by basketball fans on social media.
“As a female of the Celtics organization, watching these last few days unfold has been heartbreaking,” Pflugrad wrote on Twitter Friday. “Seeing uninvolved people’s names thrown around in the media, including mine, with such carelessness is disgusting. This is a step backwards for women in sports who have worked hard to prove themselves in an industry they deserve to be in.”
The second-year head coach was suspended by the Celtics for the entire 2022-23 season after a monthslong investigation by an independent law firm uncovered violations of multiple team policies.
Udoka was reportedly suspended for allegedly engaging in an intimate relationship with a female member of Boston’s staff, which is a violation of team policy, per ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.
The Athletic’s Shams Charania added that the Celtics became aware of the relationship in July, but that the team did not get involved until he allegedly made “unwanted comments” to the woman involved.
For obvious reasons, the name of the woman Udoka allegedly had a relationship with has been kept private. However, that has not stopped the media and people on Twitter from trying to uncover her identity.
People have been scouring the internet searching for the identities of female members of Boston’s staff, which has led to the names and photos of women within the organization being spread on social media. Pflugrad was one of the women targeted.
Celtics president of basketball operations Brad Stevens addressed the ill-advised efforts during the team’s press conference on Friday morning.
“We have a lot of talented women in our organization, and I thought yesterday was really hard on them,” Stevens said. “Nobody can control Twitter speculation and rampant bulls–t, but I do think that we as an organization have a responsibility to make sure we’re there to support them now, because a lot of people were dragged unfairly into that.”
Udoka’s status with the Celtics beyond the 2022-23 season is unclear as the franchise has not determined his long-term fate.