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With team in NBA championship series, Boston Celtics coach uses platform to share his faith

Joe Mazzulla, head coach of the Boston Celtics, believes his Christian faith is more important than his race.

Last weekend, in a news conference before the start of the NBA championship series between his team and the Dallas Mavericks, an ESPN reporter asked, “Given the plight sometimes of black head coaches in the NBA, do you think this is a significant moment? Do you take pride in this? How do you view this, or do you not see it at all.

Mazzulla responded, “I wonder how many of those have been Christian coaches,” according to the video. Mavericks head coach Jason Kidd, who is half black and half Irish, like Mazzulla is Catholic, and both coaches are graduates of Catholic high schools

Mazzulla has been open about his Christian faith during his short tenure as the Celtics’ head coach. As his team clinched a spot in the NBA finals two weeks ago, a reporter reminded Mazzulla, “You’ve said that the NBA is all about timing,” asking him, “Why is this the right time for this group?”

“It’s just where God has us right now,” he said. “We’re all where we’re supposed to be, and right now, everyone’s mindset is on helping each other and winning.”

In 2022, Mazzulla responded to a question about whether he had an opportunity to meet with members of the British Royal Family who attended a November 2022 game between the Celtics and the Miami Heat. In response, Mazzulla asked if the reporter was referring to “Jesus, Mary and Joseph.”

When the reporter clarified that she was talking about “the Prince and Princess of Wales,” Mazzulla indicated that he did not get to meet with the members of the British Royal Family. “I’m only familiar with one royal family,” he said. “I don’t know too much about that one.”

Mazzulla also spoke about his faith in an interview with Sports Spectrum in April.

“In the competitive environment that we are in, we are always used to earning something,” he said when asked about the concept of grace. “When you apply that competitive nature to your faith, it creates a lot of, for me, anxiety, stress and like and separation from Christ. So when I was able to really go down the road to grace and understanding that I can’t earn it, and I don’t have to be competitive, it’s not a win or loss. It’s an acceptance. That is one of the virtues that we can really show each other in the world today.”

–Alan Goforth | Metro Voice

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