Champion Bucks lock up Bud to 3-year extension

Add another piece of evidence to the idea that winning an NBA championship is great for your job security.

Milwaukee Bucks head coach Mike Budenholzer has agreed to a three-year contract extension, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. He will reportedly be under contract through the 2024-25 season.

A two-time NBA Coach of the Year, Budenholzer holds a 162-65 record with the Bucks. It wasn’t until this summer, though, that he was considered a keeper for the team.

Mike Budenholzer was on the hot seat before Bucks’ title

Budenholzer’s extension comes about a month after his Bucks put the finishing touches on the franchise’s first title in 50 years, defeating the Phoenix Suns in six games. 

Entering the playoffs, Budenholzer had been widely considered to be on the hot seat after two seasons of regular-season success and postseason disappointment. The Athletic had even reported Budenholzer was likely gone if the Bucks didn’t mount a deep playoff run.

Fortunately for Budenholzer, the Bucks’ mixture of Giannis Antetokounmpo, Khris Middleton and a group of premium role players finally clicked after finishing 46-26 in the regular season. The team swept the Miami Heat, survived a seven-game thriller against the Brooklyn Nets and put away the Atlanta Hawks in six despite missing Antetokounmpo for two games.

The Bucks opened the NBA Finals with two straight losses, but responded with four straight wins to finally break through for a title.

The win was a validation for Budenholzer in particular, as the coach had long carried a reputation of playoff underperformance. That went back to his days as head coach of the Atlanta Hawks, who reached the playoffs four times in five seasons under Budenholzer but never made the NBA Finals.

Now, Budenholzer has his ring and some long-term job security.

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