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SPORTS

Mike Budenholzer Agrees to Coach Phoenix Suns, AP Source Says

PHOENIX (AP) — Mike Budenholzer has agreed to coach the Phoenix Suns, according to a person familiar with the decision, as the franchise turns to the man who beat them in the 2021 NBA Finals.

The 54-year-old Budenholzer replaces Frank Vogel, who was fired Thursday after one season. The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the deal has not been officially announced.

ESPN and The Athletic both reported that Budenholzer’s deal was for five years, with The Athletic saying it was for roughly $50 million.

Budenholzer — from Holbrook, Arizona — was coach of the Milwaukee Bucks in 2021 when they roared back from a 2-0 deficit to beat the Suns in the Finals.

Phoenix has never won a championship, advancing to the Finals three times in 56 seasons.

The veteran coach will be charged with getting the more out of the team’s All-Star trio of Kevin Durant, Devin Booker and Bradley Beal. The group never quite meshed under Vogel, finishing last season with a 49-33 record before getting swept by Minnesota in the first round of the playoffs.

Budenholzer was fired by the Bucks after five seasons in 2023 and didn’t coach in the NBA last season. He also coached the Atlanta Hawks from 2013 to 2018 and has a 484-317 record over 10 seasons.


By DAVID BRANDT AP Sports Writer

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