As the Wisconsin Entertainment and Sports Center continues to be built, the Bucks hope to build the team around new head coach Mike Budenholzer. The front office believes he's the guy to take the next step with Giannis Antetokounmpo and the rest of the squad.
"You know I think one of the words I used in the interview process is, 'How can we unlock this talent defensively'," said Budenholzer at his introductory press conference on Monday. "I just think there's so much to work with. Offensively, I think it's a great challenge for me and my staff. Certainly [there are] a million ideas flying around in my head for the last 2, 3, 4 days. We'll learn from our players here, too. I think they'll teach us things. That's a way we'll go to another level."
Bucks' general manager Jon Horst said he learned a lot during the process of the coaching search but says he hopes he doesn't have to do another one for awhile.
"Bud has a career of building successful franchises," said Horst. "Bud has proven himself as a teacher and a leader in developing players. For those reasons, and many more, we know he's going to be a great fit for us, and we're excited to have him here today."
Bucks players Khris Middleton and Marshall Plumlee were in attendance at the press conference. Plumlee says he is excited to get to work with Coach Budenholzer.
"The few times I've gotten to interact with [Budenholzer], he's been a pleasure to talk to," said Plumlee, a center for Milwaukee. "He really knows the game and I've heard great things from former teammates about how driven he is as a coach and how hard he works."
Budenholzer most recently served as head coach of the Atlanta Hawks. He guided the team to a 213-197 (.520) record over the last five seasons, including four playoff appearances and a franchise best 60-22 record in 2014-15. He was named NBA Coach of the Year following the 2014-15 campaign. The Hawks reached the Eastern Conference Finals that season.