Jim Boylan: Bucks Will Not Change Under New Interim Coach

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Jim Boylan: Bucks Will Not Change Under New Interim Coach
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Jim Boylan will take over as the interim head coach of the Milwaukee Bucks after Scott Skiles was let go by the team on Jan. 7, according to Charles F. Gardner of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

The decision was made late Monday night and was mutually agreed upon by the two parties, according to Gardner. Skiles’ contract expired at the end of the season and the move was a logical one for both parties.

Skiles’ exit just goes to show how quickly fortunes can change in the NBA. Prior to the team’s current struggles, Milwaukee throttled the East-leading Miami Heat by a 104-85 margin.

The Bucks were 20-16 after that big win and looked like they could make some noise in the conference standings down the stretch. They still can, too.

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Milwaukee has simmered since extinguishing the Heat on Dec. 29.

The move leaves Boylan, a long-time assistant of Skiles, in a familiar position.

Skiles was let go in Chicago during the team's 2007-2008 season and Boylan slid in to fill the void until the end of the year. Under Boylan, the Bulls improved to an unimpressive 24-32 finish to the season.

Despite that “improvement,” Boylan has worked with Skiles since he got his start in the league in 1992 as a video assistant.

The decision to let Skiles go may be due to the team’s recent struggles. Milwaukee has dropped its past four games by a total of 38 points over that span.

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If the season were to end today, the up-and-down Bucks (17-17) would earn the seventh seed in the Eastern Conference playoffs.

The chances that a new voice ahead of the team will turn things around are slim. That’s especially true because of Boylan’s close following of Skiles; he has coached under and with the former coach for so long that most of their philosophies are likely very similar.

Tendencies aside, the Bucks have some talent and should continue to push towards a playoff berth.

The Eastern Conference is not very competitive outside of its top five teams, meaning the Bucks should be able to continue on at their current .500 win average no matter who is calling the shots for the team.

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