Ex-Bucks Head Coach Mike Budenholzer Among Finalists for Brooklyn Nets Job

Milwaukee Bucks head coach Mike Budenholzer in 2018
Former Milwaukee Bucks head coach Mike Budenholzer in 2018. Photo by John Angelillo/UPI/Shutterstock (12595193b)

The Brooklyn Nets are inching closer to finding their new head coach. The Athletic’s Shams Charania reports that the Nets already have a list of finalists, which includes former Milwaukee Bucks head coach Mike Budenholzer.

Budenholzer has been fired by the Bucks after an unceremonious end of the 2022–23 season. Milwaukee finished the regular season with the best record in the league but ended up being bounced out of the playoffs in the first round by the eight-seeded Miami Heat.

Budenholzer is well-regarded around the league, considering his track record of success. He got his first NBA head coaching job with the Atlanta Hawks in 2013–14 and led the franchise to five postseason appearances, including two Conference finals, in six seasons.

After taking over the Bucks in 2018–19, Budenholzer made the Conference semifinals in each of his first four seasons and won an NBA title in 2020–21. However, during his time with the franchise, he was often criticized for sticking to his preferred style and not adapting well to opponents’ strengths and weaknesses.

It remains to be seen whether the Nets, who fired head coach Jacque Vaughn in February, will go with a proven name in Budenholzer or pick out an up-and-coming coach. Their list of finalists reportedly also includes Phoenix Suns associate head coach Kevin Young and Sacramento Kings associate head coach Jordi Fernandez.

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