Nets ignore controversial Udoka and make Vaughn permanent head coach


The Brooklyn Nets have promoted Jacque Vaughn from interim to permanent head coach after a period of turmoil at the team.

“Jacque’s basketball acumen, competitiveness and intimate knowledge of our team and organization make him the clear-cut best person to lead our group moving forward,” Nets general manager Sean Marks said in a statement. “He has a proven ability to get the best out of our players, hold them accountable and play a cohesive, team-first style of basketball.”

The Nets parted ways with Steve Nash last week with the team struggling at a 2-5 record. The team has also been caught up in the controversy surrounding its star guard, Kyrie Irving, who posted a link to an antisemitic film and initially refused to apologize for doing so. Irving eventually issued an apology after the Nets suspended him for his apparent lack of contrition.

The Nets had been reported to be pursuing Ime Udoka to replace Nash but they have opted to go for a less divisive hire with Vaughn after the Irving saga. Udoka is serving a one-year suspension as Boston Celtics coach for conducting an improper relationship with a member of the organization.

Vaughn is seen as a reliable figure. He coached the Orlando Magic between 2012 and 2015, and has been part of the Nets staff since 2016. He also played in the NBA between 1997 and 2009, winning a championship with the San Antonio Spurs in 2007.

The Nets have gone 2-2 since Vaughn took over as interim head coach. They play their crosstown rivals, the New York Knicks, on Wednesday.