Suns Fire Frank Vogel After One Season, Look to Hire Mike Budenholzer

Vogel

The merry-go-round of NBA coaching continues, after the Suns announced on Thursday they fired Frank Vogel and reports the franchise are hiring former Bucks coach Mike Budenholzer are surfacing.

The decision was made after Phoenix were embarrassingly swept in the first round of the playoffs at the hands of Minnesota.

“As we said at the press conference on May 1, team leadership including myself, Josh Bartelstein, and ownership would be looking across basketball operations to determine what changes needed to be made,” Suns general manager James Jones said in a statement. “After a thoughtful review of the season, we concluded that we needed a different head coach for our team. We appreciate Frank’s hard work and commitment.”

ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski is reporting that “Mike Budenholzer is the Suns’ target to replace Vogel and talks are expected to move quickly. … Budenholzer has been working to assemble a coaching staff for a return to a head coaching job and that process is also gathering momentum, sources said.”

Vogel was signed to a five-year $31 million deal last June and in his time at the Suns had a 49-33 record.

“Vogel had four years left on his contract, and the cost of a $200 million-plus payroll only gets steeper with the $20 million-plus left on Vogel’s deal and what’s expected to be a substantial deal for the most accomplished head coaching candidate available in the marketplace,” Woj said.

54-year-old Budenholzer is a two-time NBA coach of the year, including the 2014-2015 and 2018-2019 seasons. He guided the Bucks to a championship in 2021.

“We are here to win a championship and last season was way below our expectations,” Jones said. “We will continue to evaluate our operation and make the necessary changes to reach our championship-caliber goals. We all take accountability, and it’s my job, along with [CEO Josh Bartelstein] and ownership, to build a championship team.”

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