Dallas Mavericks: End of season awards predictions roundtable
By Kohl Rast
Coach of the Year
“Budenholzer came in and his system absolutely unlocked the Bucks full potential. Nobody outside of the city of Milwaukee thought the Bucks had a chance to finish with the league’s best record. Heck, I live in Milwaukee and I’m not even sure anyone here thought that either.” –Sean Bush
“He took his team to the one seed. Even though he was lead by an MVP candidate, it isn’t the first and will most likely not be the last time he coaches a team to the NBA’s best record with 60 wins. Mister Mike Budenholzer, a familiar face to the Coach of the Year Award after leading Atlanta back in 2015, should deserve another.
I will say I am impressed by Nick Nurse for his first coaching year to lead Toronto to the 2 seed, as well as Mike Malone for his contribution to the Denver Nuggets, but I just feel like Budenholzer stood out the most, especially with his first round sweep against Detroit.” –Arsal Hussain
“Mike Budenholzer took over the Bucks and improved their record by 16 wins. He did this with pretty much the exact same roster, only changing the scheme on offense and defense. Under Coach Bud, the Bucks went from fringe playoff contender to the best team in the NBA.” –Ben Zajdel
“A team with no system leaves a heavy burden for its best player. However, a team with a great system and an even better player, see the Houston Rockets, are ingredients for a championship contender. Mike Budenholzer’s time with the Hawks, his system was adequate, however, it was evident he didn’t have the star player to truly push it to the limit.
Giannis Antetokounmpo is realizing the absolute dominance he possesses, and partly, he has Budenholzer to thank for his newfound success. The Bucks achieving the best team in the East title is incredible considering the franchises who were projected to finish with better records.” –Lance Roberson
“The Milwaukee Bucks’ management has done a great job in recent years, but Mike Budenholzer put them over the top this year. The shooting that the team has put around the Greek Freak has been combined with Budenholzer’s defensive prowess and a team that shoots with as much confidence as the Warriors.
Budenholzer has his team cutting, rebounding, and running the floor. The Bucks, even after dropping game one to the Celtics, are going to be very hard to beat four separate times over the course of a series, and in the event that they get past the Celtics, it is worth remembering that they would have home court advantage over the Golden State Warriors in a potential NBA finals matchup.” –Evan Siegel
“It seems like Budenholzer is the favorite, which makes a lot of sense, but there are a lot of coaches that deserve some recognition. Nick Nurse, Mike Malone, Gregg Popovich, Doc Rivers, Nate McMillan and Steve Clifford have all outproduced expectations in many ways. If I have to pick one, I think I give it to Mike Malone who has turned the Denver Nuggets into a scary team going forward.” –Kohl Rast