Il 22 settembre, è arrivata la notizia che l’allenatore capo dei Boston Celtics Ime Udoka si era impegnato in un rapporto inappropriato con un membro dello staff, il che significava che l’ex giocatore di basket NBA aveva tradito la fidanzata di lunga data Nia Long. Poco dopo, l’allenatore dei Celtics è stato sospeso dall’organizzazione, e sono emersi dettagli più dannosi. Secondo un rapporto ESPN pubblicato il 30 settembre, “[Udoka] ha usato un linguaggio volgare nel suo dialogo con una donna subordinata prima dell’inizio di un rapporto di lavoro improprio con la donna.”
Almost two weeks after her official statement, Long broke her silence on social media and posted a semi-cryptic message which seemingly pertained to her relationship. "Learn to distinguish who deserves an explanation, who deserves one answer, and who deserves absolutely nothing," the "NCIS: Los Angeles" actor wrote on Instagram. It was pointed out by some outlets that Long had mostly scrubbed Udoka from her Instagram except for a congratulatory post from May. Nearly two months later, Long opened up about the impact the affair had on her, and her family.
Why Nia Long stayed with Ime Udoka
Finding out that Ime Udoka had cheated was difficult on not only Nia Long, but the couple's son, Kez. That was the aspect that especially bothered the "Friday" star. In a December 1 feature with The Hollywood Reporter, Long said, "I think the most heartbreaking thing about all of this was seeing my son's face when the Boston Celtics organization decided to make a very private situation public." Long took issue with how Udoka's team handled the situation, calling it "disappointing" that she was not consulted before publicly announcing that the coach was being disciplined for a workplace relationship. "It was devastating, and it still is," Long said. Seeing news break that her fiancé had cheated was a tough pill to swallow for the "Fatal Affair" actor. "I literally felt like my heart had jumped out of my body," she added.
Despite the infidelity, Long decided to stay with Udoka. That news was announced by Long's ex, Massai Z. Dorsey, who she shares a child with. "We talk as a family, and it's all about unconditional love, and that's what she's giving him," Dorsey told the Daily Mail on October 4.
Long and Udoka had been engaged since 2015, but even before the cheating scandal, they were in no hurry to tie the knot. "But I don't know that I need [marriage] to feel like I'm in a partnership that's working," Long told Essence in 2020 while discussing her relationship with the former NBA player.