BOSTON — The Boston Celtics are beginning their offseason with a shakeup of the front office and coaching staff, with team president Danny Ainge stepping down and coach Brad Stevens moving into the front office, a person with direct knowledge of the moves said Wednesday.
Celtics staff were informed of the moves Wednesday morning, said the person who spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the team has not made any announcements publicly.
ESPN and The Athletic first reported the Ainge and Stevens moves.
According to ESPN, sources said Stevens was worn down with coaching since "The Bubble," and he was ready to jump at the chance to transition to the front office.
Boston’s season ended Tuesday night in Brooklyn, with the Celtics falling in a five-game first-round series against the Nets.
Ainge has spent the bulk of his NBA career with the Celtics, serving as the team’s president since 2003 and being part of the 1984 and 1986 NBA championship teams in Boston as a player. He was voted the league’s top executive in 2008, the year in which Boston won its 17th and most recent NBA championship.
Ainge has only hired two coaches during his time: Doc Rivers and Stevens.
Stevens spent eight years as Boston’s coach, taking the Celtics to the playoffs the last seven seasons and multiple times to the Eastern Conference finals. He is the fourth-winningest coach in team history, behind Red Auerbach, Tom Heinsohn and Doc Rivers.
Stevens got into coaching by being offered a chance to volunteer with the Butler basketball office in 2000. Stevens quit his job with Eli Lilly and worked his way up in the program. He was named head coach in 2007 and took the team into the 2008 NCAA tournament before falling in the second round. Stevens took the team back to the NCAA tournament the next year and then in the 2010 tournament, they made it to the championship game before falling to Duke 61-59. The next year, Butler again made it to the championship game, but they fell to Connecticut.