Budenholzer, Nurse, Young Among Suns’ HC Candidates

Following their dismissal of head coach Monty Williams on Saturday, the Suns are putting together a list of candidates for the vacancy that includes Mike Budenholzer, Nick Nurse, and Kevin Young, league sources tell Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports (Twitter links). According to Haynes, that list of candidates will continue to grow.

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It’s unclear whether Phoenix has lined up interviews yet with Budenholzer, Nurse, or Young, but the team won’t need to seek permission to speak to any of them. Budenholzer and Nurse were recently let go by their teams, while Young is the associate head coach on the Suns’ own staff, having served as Williams’ top assistant.

Budenholzer has a career regular season record 484-317 (.604) as a head coach, with a 56-48 (.538) mark in the playoffs. He coached the Hawks from 2013-18 and the Bucks from 2018-23, winning a title in Milwaukee in 2021 and earning Coach of the Year honors in both 2015 and 2019.

Nurse, who is coming off a five-year stint as head coach of the Raptors, won a championship in 2019 and was named Coach of the Year in 2020. He had a 227-163 (.582) regular season record and a 25-16 (.610) postseason mark in Toronto.

Young coached multiple G League teams and was an assistant coach with the Sixers before joining the Suns in 2020.

Marc Stein reported on Saturday that the Suns will also look into the possibility of trying to lure Tyronn Lue away to the Clippers, but it’s unclear if Phoenix will have any success on that front, Stein writes in his latest Substack story.

Lue remains under contract with Los Angeles and reportedly has the support of team owner Steve Ballmer, according to Stein. As such, it seems unlikely that the Clippers would let him leave for a division rival without receiving some form of compensation. For what it’s worth though, there has been chatter in league circles about the Suns’ interest in Lue for several days, tweets Andrew Greif of The Los Angeles Times.

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