New Sixers assistant Ime Udoka explains why he left the Spurs and joined Brett Brown
Ime Udoka spent seven years as a player in the NBA, but three came with the San Antonio Spurs, where he established a relationship with head coach Gregg Popovich and came to appreciate a culture built on a tradition of winning. Brett Brown was part of that culture, too, and now Udoka and Brown have been reunited… but not in San Antonio.
When his playing days ended, Udoka immediately joined Popovich’s coaching staff as an assistant. He would go on to spend the next seven seasons with the Spurs, becoming one of Pop’s most trusted guys on the bench.
Udoka is now embracing the unknown, electing to leave San Antonio to be on Brett Brown’s coaching staff with the Philadelphia 76ers.
Udoka spoke to Jabari Young of The Athletic about his personal journey, and his reasons for heading to the City of Brotherly Love:
“A different challenge is always exciting to me,” Udoka told The Athletic late Monday night. “I’m not the type that gets nervous and worries about a new situation. I always look at it as a chance to grow and seeing different situations, and all that will help me going forward.
“When you’ve done something; you know I spent seven years as a coach here, seeing new things, being with new players and bouncing ideas off of different coaches and new philosophies is a way to grow and see things from a different perspective.”
Brown and the Sixers will be overjoyed to have Udoka on staff. Udoka spent his days playing with and coaching for Tim Duncan, Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili. He should be a boon for Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid in Philadelphia.