Arizona town split amid NBA Finals with special tie to Milwaukee Bucks coach

NBA Finals Bucks Suns Basketball
Posted at 12:26 PM, Jul 05, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-06 22:31:08-04

HOLBROOK, AZ — Game 1 of the NBA Finals is Tuesday and most of Arizona will be rooting for the Phoenix Suns to win. But in Holbrook, a town about 90 miles east of Flagstaff, some people may be feeling conflicted.

Mike Budenholzer, head coach of the Milwaukee Bucks, was born and raised in Holbrook along with his six siblings. His family is almost like royalty in the small town of a little over 5,000 residents.

Budenholzer was a three-sport athlete at the Holbrook High School, playing football, golf, and basketball. He later graduated from the school.

His father, Vince, coached at the high school for over 20 years and was later inducted into the Arizona High Schools Athletic Coaches Hall of Fame. His mother, Libby, became the first female city council member in 1975. Six years later in 1981, she became the town's first female mayor.

The Budenholzer family continuously gives back to Holbrook High School. Mike has a $1,000 scholarship in his name that goes to an outstanding student-athlete each year. His parents also have a $1,000 scholarship in their name that is given to a senior each year who’s shown strong civic and community engagement.

In 2019, the Budenholzer family gave $100,000 to the high school at the unveiling of the basketball court named in Vince Budenholzer’s honor. Mike said the donation is to support the teachers and students, current and future, at the school.

So while most of Arizona will be pulling for the Suns, don’t be surprised if someone from Holbrook is wearing a Bucks jersey.