The Milwaukee Bucks won’t be hiring another head coach at this time. Less than a week after the stunning news that Jason Kidd had been fired, the Bucks announced that Joe Prunty will remain the head coach for the remainder of the 2017-18 NBA season. They also announced the hire of former All-Star Vin Baker, who’ll join Prunty’s staff.
In announcing this move, general manager Jon Horst acknowledged that Prunty will be “evaluated and considered as part of our widespread off-season search for our next head coach,” meaning he has a chance to make an impression the rest of the season.
“We believe that Joe is the right person to lead our team and help us achieve our goals,” said General Manager Jon Horst. “He has the knowledge and experience, along with the respect of our players and staff, to get the job done.”
The Bucks won their first game under Punty, just hours after Kidd had been fired. Superstar Giannis Antetokounmpo had previously been outed as being very upset about the Kidd firing, however, he recently expressed frustration that those comments were made public.
“It’s kind of uncomfortable, especially for a guy like me that is — as I said, one of my characteristics is that I’m being loyal to the people around me,” Antetokounmpo told reporters, per ESPN. “That’s one of my characteristics, but it’s kind of uncomfortable knowing before it happened.”
While the Kidd firing came as a huge shock to many, it was later reported that he had tried to trade Jabari Parker, which may have contributed to the decision. Whatever the reasons, Milwaukee’s success or failure now no longer depends on the former superstar turned coach. It’s going to be fascinating to see how this young, talented team develops in the coming years.