Mike Budenholzer has been the central topic of conversation surrounding the Atlanta Hawks in mid-April and that comes as a result of buzz that he could be looking elsewhere for future employment. First, a report emerged linking Budenholzer to potential interest in the Milwaukee Bucks and, shortly thereafter, the Phoenix Suns came to light as a possible destination.
On Tuesday evening, additional information emerged from ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, outlining extended meetings between Budenholzer and the Suns over a two-day period. While there were many informative nuggets in the reporting, one tidbit emerged as potentially revelatory from a Hawks perspective, and that was the fact that “both (the Hawks and Budenholzer) are open to ending their partnership, but there are several hurdles that would need to be cleared before that could happen.”
The piece goes on to shed light on the fact that Phoenix has not yet made an offer and, in addition to that hurdle (and the fact that the team is considering other candidates), Michael Cunningham of the AJC reports directly that “the Hawks indicated that he would not be released from his contract without compensation.” As a result, any deal to send Budenholzer to Phoenix does not appear imminent, though it is difficult, at least in some ways, to envision a scenario in which the head coach returns to Atlanta given all of the publicly available information.
Buckle up. This will be a developing story in the coming hours and days.