Adrian Wojnarowski: Atlanta Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer has withdrawn from consideration for the Phoenix Suns head coaching job, league sources tell ESPN.
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Budenholzer met with Suns general manager Ryan McDonough and owner Robert Sarver over the two days, league sources said, after Atlanta granted him permission to meet with Phoenix late last week.
The Hawks and Budenholzer are both open to ending their partnership, but there are several hurdles that would need to be cleared before that could happen — including the Suns making an offer, agreeing to a contract, and possibile compensation to Atlanta.
The Suns are considering several head-coaching candidates, but have largely been focused on getting to know Budenholzer — who is a native of Arizona — in recent days, league sources said. Phoenix has had informal conversations with former head coaches Steve Clifford (Charlotte), Frank Vogel (Orlando and Indiana) and David Blatt (Cleveland), sources said. The Suns are still considering interim coach Jay Triano.
Adrian Wojnarowski: Atlanta Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer has been meeting with Phoenix Suns management and ownership on Monday and Tuesday, and a sense is expected to emerge soon whether there is a pathway to Budenholzer becoming the Suns’ next head coach, league sources tell ESPN.
If Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer decides to take another job, it almost certainly will cost his new team in the form of draft-pick compensation. Budenholzer still is under contract with the Hawks for two more seasons at about $14 million (his deal wasn’t altered when he gave up his personnel power in 2017). The Hawks have granted him permission to speak with the Suns about their open head coach position. If Budenholzer takes that job or any other, the Hawks would demand compensation to let Budenholzer out of his contract.
Budenholzer is planning to meet with Suns officials early next week, league sources said. A native of Arizona, Budenholzer permission to meet with Suns about head coach opening has two years, $14 million-plus left on his contract.
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September 18, 2018 | 10:54 pm EDT Update
JH: What does it mean to you when people say you are now “The best player in the East?” Giannis Antetokounmpo: There is going to be a lot of people out there that is going to say I am the best in the East and there is going to be some that says that I am not the best in the East, so my mindset is to keep working hard, focus on my game and to continue making my team better. We are trying to get as many wins as possible.
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