Bucks' Budenholzer named top coach by his peers

NEW YORK — Milwaukee Bucks Head Coach Mike Budenholzer is the 2019 recipient of the Michael H. Goldberg NBCA Coach of the Year Award, the National Basketball Coaches Association announced today.

The Michael H. Goldberg NBCA Coach of the Year Award recognizes the dedication, commitment and hard work of NBA Head Coaches and is presented annually to a Head Coach who helps guide his players to a higher level of performance on the court and shows outstanding service and dedication to the community off the court. It honors the spirit of Michael H. Goldberg who set the standard for loyalty, integrity, love of the game, passionate representation and tireless promotion of NBA coaching. It is unique in that it is the only award voted upon by the winners’ peers, the Head Coaches of all 30 NBA teams.

The voting for this year’s award once again illustrates the depth of coaching excellence in the NBA, as 8 of the 30 Head Coaches received votes. In addition to Budenholzer, the following Coaches also received votes: Kenny Atkinson, Michael Malone, Nate McMillan, Gregg Popovich, Doc Rivers, Quin Snyder and Terry Stotts.

“The Michael H. Goldberg NBCA Coach of the Year Award for the top NBA Coach as voted by his peers is one of the most meaningful in all of pro sports,” said Dallas Mavericks Head Coach and National Basketball Coaches Association President Rick Carlisle. “Mike Budenholzer in his first year as Head Coach of the Bucks, led the franchise to the top record in the entire NBA. Congratulations to Bud on this prestigious recognition.”

In just his first year with the Bucks, Coach Mike Budenholzer guided the team to the best record in the NBA, 60-22. This season the Bucks had their best record since 1980-81, the last time Milwaukee had 60 regular season wins. The Bucks also captured their first divisional title since 2000-01. Their record of 60-22 was a 16 victory improvement over last season, the second best improvement in the league. The Bucks were the only team to rank in the top four in both offensive and defensive rating, and had the best net rating (+9.0) in the NBA.

Budenholzer and his coaching staff were the Coaches for Team Giannis at the 2019 NBA All-Star Game in Charlotte. He was also the Head Coach of the Eastern Conference team at the 2015 NBA All-Star Game. In six seasons as a head coach, Budenholzer has a 273-219 coaching record and a winning percentage of .555.

“It is an incredible honor to be recognized by your peers, and that makes this award truly special,” said Milwaukee Bucks Head Coach Mike Budenholzer. “Thank you to my colleagues across the NBA, and most importantly thank you to our players and staff in Milwaukee. The players’ and staffs’ work this year has given our team and our fans a very special season.

“Michael H. Goldberg was a mentor and a friend to me for many years as he helped me grow to this moment. My staff and I are grateful for all he and the NBA Coaches Association have done and continue to do for coaches in the NBA.”

The National Basketball Coaches Association, and its entire membership, congratulates Coach Budenholzer on his impressive season. The Michael H. Goldberg NBCA Coach of the Year Award trophy will be presented to him at the NBCA Annual Meeting of Head Coaches in September.

“I had the good fortune of working alongside Michael H. Goldberg each and every day. Michael was incredibly generous with his wisdom, advice, guidance and time,” said David S. Fogel, NBCA Executive Director. “The Michael H. Goldberg NBCA Coach of the Year Award is presented each year to the Head Coach who exemplifies the same high level of integrity and excellence that Michael displayed during his highly successful career. Coach Budenholzer exemplifies these values on and off the court, and his tireless work ethic led to one of the most successful seasons in Bucks franchise history. Congratulations to Coach Budenholzer and the entire Bucks Coaching Staff, this honor is well deserved.”

The Michael H. Goldberg NBCA Coach of the Year Award is named after the esteemed long-time Executive Director of the National Basketball Coaches Association. The NBCA encompasses all Head and Assistant Coaches in the NBA, and its alumni. In 1980, just four years after the NBCA was founded, Michael H. Goldberg became its first Executive Director. Building on the existing foundation of the NBCA, he guided it during the years of the greatest growth in professional basketball. He helped gain significant benefits for NBA Coaches, including increased retirement funds and disability insurance. Prior to the NBCA, Goldberg was General Counsel of the American Basketball Association.

The prior recipients of the Michael H. Goldberg NBCA Coach of the Year Award are:

2018: Dwane Casey

2017: Mike D’Antoni and Erik Spoelstra

The NBA will announce the winner of the Red Auerbach Trophy as the NBA’s Coach of the Year Award on June 24 at the third annual NBA Awards Show live from Los Angeles on TNT at 9pm ET.