The Bucks’ rationale for dismissing Adrian Griffin and the possibility that Doc Rivers will succeed him as head coach

The Bucks’ rationale for dismissing Adrian Griffin and the possibility that Doc Rivers will succeed him as head coach

It resulted from months of lackluster performance, during which internal worries grew regarding the steep decline within their once-elite protection, the erroneous pairing of rookie Damian Lillard and franchise star Giannis Antetokounmpo, and a general apprehension that this group, which was widely anticipated to contend for a championship, would likely fail if Milwaukee remained stagnant.

There were strong indications that a change was imminent following the December In-Season Tournament, during which the Bucks were defeated by the Indiana Pacers in Las Vegas, and internal skepticism regarding Griffin’s ability to lead increased.

League sources say that the Bucks instructed Doc Rivers, who has been an ESPN analyst since he departed from the Philadelphia 76ers in May, to start offering informal consulting services to Griffin.

After a month had passed, several informed sources confirmed that Rivers was the most qualified candidate for the vacant position or the leader of choice among key stakeholders.

“Making this decision during the season was a challenging endeavor,” Horst said in the statement. “We are actively working to hire our subsequent head coach without delay.” We appreciate Coach Griffin’s contributions and hard work on behalf of the team.

The immediate cause of Griffin’s termination was unclear. In the interim, assistant Joe Prunty will assume the role of coach. Wednesday will be a question hour for Horst with the media.

On Tuesday, Shams Charania of The Athletic and Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN reported that legendary NBA coach Doc Rivers was already in negotiations with the Bucks for the position.

At the request of the Bucks, Rivers began serving as an informal consultant to Griffin in recent weeks, according to Charania.

According to Charania, Golden State Warriors coach Kenny Atkinson might also be considered for the role if negotiations with Rivers fail.

Griffin is dismissed from his position as head coach after 43 games through his tenure. Griffin was hired during the offseason to take on Mike Budenholzer, who was terminated following the No. 1 seed Bucks’ first-round playoff loss to the Miami Heat.

Griffin held this position as the inaugural NBA head coach. Before joining the Toronto Raptors, he served as an assistant for the Milwaukee Bucks, Chicago Bulls, Orlando Magic, and Oklahoma City Thunder throughout fifteen seasons. He was an NBA veteran for nine seasons, from 1999 to 2008.

The Milwaukee Bucks promptly appointed Doc Rivers as their coach of record instead of the terminated Adrian Griffin. The franchise announced Rivers’ appointment.

 The team unexpectedly dismissed Griffin, who had a 30-13 record and was ranked second within the Eastern Conference standings.

Rivers was reportedly being considered as a potential replacement shortly thereafter; this was confirmed approximately six hours after Griffin was fired. Milwaukee’s defensive rating has significantly declined from 110.9 last season, when it ranked fourth in the league, to 116.8 this season, which ranks 22nd in the NBA.

While ESPN reported that assistant coach Joe Prunty was projected to be appointed interim coach, The Athletic reports that Doc Rivers has emerged as a “serious contender” to replace Griffin and is currently negotiating a contract with the Bucks.

In a statement confirming the move, Bucks team president Jon Horst said, “This was a challenging decision to reach throughout the season.” “We are making efforts to hire our next coach without delay.” We appreciate Coach Griffin’s contributions and hard work on behalf of the team.

Last spring, the NBA appointed Griffin, 49, as the head coach of the Milwaukee Bucks for the first time. Milwaukee tied for the Eastern Conference’s and league’s second-best record with a record of 30-13.

Nevertheless, apprehensions arose regarding the Bucks’ defense, as they have permitted 120.5 points per game, which ranks sixth in the NBA and represents an increase from the 113.3 points per game conceded in the previous campaign.

Griffin, a former NBA player for a total of nine seasons, began his career as a coach in 2008 as an assistant with the Bucks.

He subsequently held assistant positions with the Bulls, Magic, Thunder, and then with the Raptors, when he was a member of the coaching team that won the 2019 NBA championship.