When Brad Stevens said last month that he had zero interest in leaving the Celtics to take the open coaching job at Indiana University, he apparently wasn’t exaggerating.
Speaking before Boston’s nationally televised game against Golden State on Saturday night, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported that the Hoosiers were prepared to offer the 44-year-old Stevens “seven years, $70 million” to depart Boston for Bloomington.
“I tried to say it as clearly as I could and also make sure that people understand that [Indiana] is special to me,” Stevens said on March 19. “Because I don’t want to make it sound like it’s not. But, like I said the other day, I’m so grateful to this organization, and to the people here, and for all that they’ve done for us.”
Stevens, in his eighth year coaching the Celtics, signed an extension in August 2020. Terms were not disclosed, but his original 2013 deal with the team was for six years and $22 million. He signed a three-year extension to that in 2016, which a source at the time described as making Stevens “well compensated.”
“One of the things that’s been really important to Tracy and I all the way through,” Stevens said last year, referencing his wife, “was if we were going to do this coaching thing, to try our best to make it as stable as possible without moving too much. We’ve been incredibly blessed when you consider 13 years at Butler and finishing up a seventh with the Celtics.”
The highest-paid coach in the NBA is believed to be San Antonio’s Gregg Popovich, at a reported $11 million per season.