Milwaukee Bucks fire head coach Mike Budenholzer
The Milwaukee Bucks announced they have relieved head coach Mike Budenholzer of his duties, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.
The decision came after the Bucks were surprisingly bounced from the first round of the NBA Playoffs by the Miami Heat.
It was the second time in the last four playoffs the Heat eliminated the Bucks in five games. Both times the Bucks were the top seed in the Eastern Conference. Miami dispatched Milwaukee in the Eastern Conference semifinals in 2020.
Heat superstar Jimmy Butler had a memorable first-round performance to help the Heat become just the sixth eighth seed all time to eliminate the one seed in the first round.
Budenholzer seemed to not have much of an answer for Butler despite having former NBA Defensive Player of the Year and two-time MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo ready and willing to defend Butler.
Although, Giannis did miss most of Game 1 and then all of Games 2 and 3 with a back injury.
The Milwaukee Bucks held double-digit leads in the fourth quarter in Games 4 and 5 only to see the Heat rally to victory.
The Bucks had a chance to win in the last remaining seconds of regulation and overtime in Game 5, but never got good shots off because Coach Bud did not call a timeout in those situations to advance the ball to halfcourt.
It was a mistake that cost the Bucks dearly.
Adjusting during the game and setting a playoff rotation was something that always plagued Budenholzer in his five seasons as the Bucks’ head coach
To be fair, he was coaching in the playoffs despite mourning the loss of his brother who passed away during the Heat series.
A business decision still had to be made and Budenholzer was the one who was held accountable for the team’s playoff failure.