Mike Budenholzer‘s job status appears to be tenuous, but the Bucks are expected to take their time before determining what to do with their head coach, who still has two years left on his contract, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski said on NBA Today (YouTube link).
According to Wojnarowski, the Bucks are in “shock” over their first-round loss to the Heat and have been known to be patient under general manager Jon Horst. He also points out that there’s a new ownership group in place, which may complicate matters — Jimmy and Dee Haslam recently bought Marc Lasry‘s stake in the Bucks, which was thought to be about 25 percent.
“I think this is a Milwaukee organization that is going to take their time,” Wojnarowski said. “Because here’s the thing… you’ve gotta know who you’re going to bring in. Who is out there at a championship level that you can bring in that’s better than what you know you have? That’s a very short list. … I don’t think there will be a quick resolution in terms of making a decision on Mike Budenholzer’s future.”
Here’s more from the Central:
- The Pistons finished with the worst record in the NBA in 2022/23 and will have roughly $30MM in cap space this summer. Which of their possible free agents will be retained, and which will be headed out of town? James L. Edwards III tackles that subject for The Athletic, writing that only Isaiah Livers‘ spot with the team is secure — Detroit holds a $1.8MM option for the young forward next season. Of the remaining players who either have team options or are set to hit unrestricted free agency, Edwards places the lowest odds (0-10 percent) on Cory Joseph coming back.
- Many thought Jalen Duren would spend a good chunk of ’22/23 in the G League — he was the youngest player in the league and was considered a fairly raw prospect. Instead, the 19-year-old center had an excellent rookie season for the Pistons and appears firmly entrenched as a foundational piece, writes Keith Langlois of Pistons.com. “That’s one guy I won’t ever put a ceiling on,” GM Troy Weaver said after the season. “As you keep watching him, you just see different things. … He’s a very smart young man. Got tremendous gifts. He’s got a chance to be a big-time player.” As Langlois notes, Duren led all rookies with 3.4 offensive rebounds and 8.9 total rebounds per game. He also averaged 9.1 points while shooting 64.8% from the floor in 67 games (24.9 minutes).
- There were peaks and valleys during Patrick Williams‘ third season with the Bulls, but the former lottery pick hopes to have a long NBA career and is focused on improving for next season, according to Darnell Mayberry of The Athletic. “I felt a lot more comfortable, a lot more aggressive but (still) not who I want to be,” Williams said. “That’s pretty much what it comes down to. You’ve got to put the work in to be who you want to be in this league. Obviously, at 21 you’re not going to be the person you’re going to be obviously when you’re 31. … I learned a lot about (myself) personally, about us as a team, about the game, learning how to read the game, how to really dissect the game. When I say I didn’t live up to what I wanted the season to be for me, it wasn’t like it was a terrible season. It’s just there’s more work to be done.”