The Boston Celtics have hired Butler coach Brad Stevens as their next head coach.
Stevens is considered one of the brightest young minds in the game and the move was seen as somewhat of a shock in basketball circles considering Stevens was hesitant to leave Butler for bigger, more established college programs in the past.
“Our family is thrilled for the opportunity given to us by the leadership of the Boston Celtics, but it is emotional to leave a place that we have called home for the past 13 years,” Stevens said in a statement. “We truly love Butler University and Indianapolis, and are very thankful to have had the opportunity to celebrate so many wonderful things together. What makes Butler truly unique is the people that we have been so blessed to work with. When it comes time for our kids to look at schools, we will start with Butler University.”
The 36-year-old Stevens guided the Bulldogs to surprise berths in the NCAA title game in 2010 and 2011, though his teams lost to Duke and UConn, respectively in those years.
He will be the youngest head coach in the NBA when he coaches his first game this October.
“Brad and I share a lot of the same values,” Celtics president Danny Ainge said in a statement to Sports Illustrated. “Though he is young, I see Brad as a great leader who leads with impeccable character and a strong work ethic. His teams always play hard and execute on both ends of the court. Brad is a coach who has already enjoyed lots of success, and I look forward to working with him towards Banner 18.”
The Celtics will introduce Stevens as the 17th head coach in franchise history on Friday.