Nia Long criticized the Celtics on Wednesday for the organization’s “irresponsible” handling of an alleged affair involving her former partner, embattled coach Ime Udoka.
A day after news of her split from Udoka broke, the 52-year-old Best Man: The Final Chapters actress attended the film’s premiere in Hollywood, where she spoke to Entertainment Tonight about the “incredibly difficult” issue. which went public earlier this year.
“I think it’s been really hard to manage all of that while I’m working and trying to be a mom — I’m trying to find the humanity in it all,” Long said.
In September, Long’s world was rocked when Udoka, 45, her husband since 2015, was accused of having an improper and consensual relationship with a female member of the Celtics staff. He was then suspended by the organization for the 2022-23 season, less than six months after leading Boston to the NBA Finals.
Long, who has an 11-year-old son with Udoka, shared how he believes his family’s well-being was neglected when the incident came to light.
“It seems that no one thinks about me, about my children. There was no protection. “I think the Celtics were irresponsible and it’s unfortunate,” Long said.
“It really was, because we were welcomed as a family, and then it was like, ‘What happened?’ seemed to say. But I’m getting it.”
Long’s comments on Wednesday echo thoughts from a recent interview with The Hollywood Reporter, where he spoke about the Udoka scandal.
“I think the hardest part of all of this was seeing the look on my son’s face when the Boston Celtics organization decided to go public with a very personal situation,” Long said in an interview with the publication last week.
Long, who has supported Udoka and the Celtics through the playoffs, also told The Hollywood Reporter how grateful he is for the support from the fans.
“What I found was a tribe of women and men who stood up for me, I felt like I was in this protective bubble, and it was very comforting,” she said.
A source exclusively confirmed to People on Tuesday that Long and Udoka have ended their 13-year relationship. An insider says Nia is “focusing on her kids and getting her life back together.”
The Celtics did not immediately respond to The Post’s request for comment.