NBA Rumors: Boston Celtics Expected to Retain Head Coach

The Boston Celtics are out of the playoffs following a disappointing Eastern Conference Finals Game 7 loss to the Miami Heat, but their faith in coach Joe Mazzulla appears unshaken. Speaking with reporters on Thursday, Celtics president of basketball operations Brad Stevens reasserted his commitment to the first-year head coach. Mazzulla was suddenly and surprisingly thrust into the spotlight this season after the Celtics suspended then-head coach Ime Udoka due to a consensual sexual relationship that violated team policy. Udoka was eventually dismissed, clearing the way for Mazzulla to drop his interim tag. At 34 years old, he is the youngest head coach in the NBA.

Mazzulla piloted the Celtics through a successful 2022-23 season despite the drama, guiding his team to the NBA's second-best record and the league's best point differential (+6.5). However, upon falling down 3-0 to the Heat in the Eastern Conference Finals, speculation began to swirl that Mazzulla's tenure could be short-lived. Luckily for Mazzulla, the Celtics clawed their way back to the brink of the Finals, winning three straight and forcing a Game 7 at home. 

Given the Celtic's deep playoff run, upgrading Mazzulla would have proven a difficult task for the Celtics; the premier head coaching candidates have already found their new homes. Plus, considering his age and the unusual circumstances that earned him his job, it's entirely possible Mazzulla will continue to grow and learn in his role. If he improves, and the team gets a little bit better luck with injuries, the Celtics will have every chance to contend for a title in 2023-24. Changing head coaches at this stage won't help them.  
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