BOSTON (CBS) -- Ime Udoka is heading into his first postseason as an NBA head coach on a high note. On Tuesday, the man in charge of the Celtics was named the Eastern Conference Coach of the Month for March and April.
Udoka's Celtics went 15-4 over the final six weeks of the regular season to clinch the No. 2 seed in the Eastern Conference, finishing the campaign with a 51-31 record. It's the second straight Coach of the Month award for Udoka, who also won the honor in February after the Celtics went 9-2.
He's the first Celtics head coach to win the award in back-to-back months since Doc Rivers did so in 2008. Udoka's two Coach of the Month awards tie him with Phoenix's Monty Williams for the most this season.
Not bad for a first-year head coach.
The Celtics pulled off a massive second-half turnaround under Udoka, going from play-in purgatory in mid-January to the top of the Eastern Conference standings by season's end. Boston possesses the NBA's best defensive rating (106.8) and second-best overall net rating (7.4 -- trailing only Phoenix's 7.5 net rating) heading into the playoffs.
Udoka's 51 wins are the sixth-most in franchise history for a first-year Celtics coach, and just the third time a rookie head coach has led Boston to a 50-win season. Now he and his team will look to continue their hot streak in the postseason, which will start Sunday against either the Brooklyn Nets or Cleveland Cavaliers.
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