The Milwaukee Bucks are going in a different direction as head coach after they reportedly fired Mike Budenholzer following the team’s upset first-round playoff loss to the Miami Heat.
The Bucks had the best record in the NBA this season at 58-24, yet the Milwaukee front office believed it was time for a fresh mind to lead the team after the eighth-seeded Heat needed just five games to break. defeat them.
Jimmy Butler scored 98 points in the last two games of the series, including a lopsided drive-in basket that sent Game 5 into overtime. Miami ultimately won, 128-126.
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The Bucks’ move is especially shocking considering Budenholzer was at the helm when Milwaukee won it all in 2021, its first NBA championship since 1971.
Budenholzer revealed to The Athletic that he had lost one of his three brothers before Game 4 of the series. He died from injuries in a car accident.
BUCKS’ MIKE BUDENHOLZER’S BROTHER DIED DURING HEAT PLAYOFF SERIES LOSS
Budenholzer did not speak about his brother’s death during the series, but Los Angeles Lakers head coach Darvin Ham, who was Budenholzer’s assistant for four seasons in Milwaukee, told reporters last week what Budenholzer was going through. .
«Coach Bud is going through a lot on a personal level,» Ham said. «He just lost a brother. So my apologies, Bud, if he wasn’t supposed to tell anyone. Me and him have been texting. I love those guys.»
Budenholzer spent the last five seasons leading the Bucks to a 271-120 (.693) overall record in 391 games. His title in 2021 was the first of his career.
Budenholzer has five years of head coaching experience with the Atlanta Hawks, where he spent five seasons from 2013-2018 before moving to Milwaukee.
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A coach with plenty of NBA experience, Budenholzer should be a hot commodity this offseason for teams in the market for a new head coach.