Since joining the Milwaukee Bucks in 2018, Head Coach Mike Budenholzer’s regular season record is a staggering 162-65. Budenholzer’s career post-season record is 32-32.
Following a lethargic and frustrating second round playoff loss to the underdog Heat in 2020, General Manager Jon Horst turned over nearly 50-percent of the roster.
Throughout the regular season, Budenholzer tinkered with rotations, switching, zone defense, half-court offense…the list goes on.
But will Budenholzer move his chess pieces come playoff time? A time when the game slows down, and rotations tighten?
In 2019, after the Bucks built a 2-0 series lead, the Toronto Raptors won four straight to advance to the NBA finals.
In 2020, the Heat dismissed the Bucks in five games in a series that never felt close to being in the Bucks hands – despite owning the number-1 seed in the east.
In both cases, Budenholzer was outcoached. His stubbornness, lack of adjustments and “we’re just focused on us” attitude contributed to the Bucks season ending pre-maturely.
All the above are reasons why so many so-called experts are picking the Heat to win the series.
The Bucks are built for long-term success. The big-three of Giannis, Jrue Holiday and Khris Middleton are under contract together through the 2023-2024 season.
Is it a “win-now” or else situation for the Bucks? No. But it could be for their Head Coach.