Report: Celtics seek permission to interview Jay Larranaga for assistant role

Report: Celtics eyeing reunion with former longtime assistant coach originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston

The Boston Celtics fully support Joe Mazzulla in his new role as interim head coach. But they also recognize that the 34-year-old may benefit from some extra experience on his bench.

The Celtics are seeking permission to speak with Los Angeles Clippers assistant coach Jay Larranaga about joining Mazzulla's staff, ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reported Tuesday night.

UPDATE: The Clippers have granted the Celtics permission to speak with Larranaga, but Boston has spoken with "several" other assistant coach candidates as well, per The Boston Globe's Adam Himmelsbach.

Forsberg: Why Celtics trust Mazzulla in interim head coach role

Larranaga spent nine seasons with the Celtics from 2012 to 2021 and was Brad Stevens' top assistant before Stevens shifted to president of basketball operations in June 2021. Larranaga was briefly considered for Boston's head coach vacancy before Stevens filled it in 2013, so he's clearly well-respected in the organization.

Stevens spoke glowingly of Mazzulla on Friday and expressed faith in Mazzulla's "good group" of assistant coaches, highlighting Damon Stoudamire and Ben Sullivan as "critical" to Boston's operation. But the Celtics lost a lot of experience this offseason with Ime Udoka suspended due to a violation of organizational guidelines and Udoka's top assistant, Will Hardy, taking the Utah Jazz head coach job.

Larranaga would be a natural fit to provide additional leadership on a team with championship aspirations after reaching the NBA Finals in 2022.