How Joe Mazzulla Became Head Coach Of The Boston Celtics

Joe Mazzulla Celtics
David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

Boston Celtics head coach Joe Mazzulla will be on the bench coaching Team Giannis in the NBA All-Star game on February 19th. His story is unlike most head coaches in the league, as he’s progressed in the coaching ranks rather quick.

Joe Mazzulla As A Player

West Virginia University (WVU) recruited Mazzulla out of high school as a guard in 2006. He spent five years there, the last four with current WVU head coach Bob Huggins. Joe Mazzulla was a consistent scorer with high-energy on the defensive end of the floor. He was voted captain his junior year and contributed to a final-four run that season.

He averaged 7.7 points per game in 2010-2011, his final college season before declaring for the NBA draft.

After going undrafted in 2011, Mazzulla looked overseas for places to play, but never landed anywhere. He changed his focus to the coaching world.

Coaching Career

Joe Mazzulla spent the next five years as an assistant for Glenville State and Fairmont State before earning an assistant coach role with the Celtics G league affiliate, the Maine Red Claws. He then spent two seasons back with Fairmont State, this time as head coach, before resuming his NBA coaching journey.

He was hired as an assistant coach by Brad Stevens in 2019, and continued as such when Ime Udoka was hired in 2021. After a team-enforced suspension of Udoka following a 2022 finals appearance, Mazzulla was the man to take over.

The 2022-2023 Celtics

Mazzulla was a guy that was vouched for by multiple Celtics players. They wanted him to remain on the staff through the coaching change of Stevens to Udoka, and it came to none of their surprises when he became the head coach this year. The comradery is at it’s peak, and winning has only helped build that up.

All-NBA forward Jayson Tatum had some nice words for the coach back in June.

Joe Mazzulla has led the Boston Celtics to a league-best record of 36-15. Despite reaching the finals a year ago, the chemistry of this team appears to be at an all-time high.

The Celtics are top 5 in both offensive and defensive rating. 116.6 and 110.9, respectively. Star player Jayson Tatum will join Mazzulla’s staff as a starter for the All-Star game. Reserves are still TBD, but Jaylen Brown is projected to be one of them.

Boston will face the Brooklyn Nets (31-19) tonight at home. Guard Ben Simmons and forward T.J. Warren will be out for Brooklyn, while the Celtics will miss point guard Marcus Smart for the fifth consecutive game with a right ankle sprain.

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