The Bucks added their first two assistants to head coach Larry Drew’s staff: Bob Bender and Nick Van Exel, both of whom worked with Drew in Atlanta.
While Bender (above, mustard-colored suit) sat a little closer to the head coaching seat in Atlanta and has more experience than Van Exel (including an assistant coaching gig under Mike Krzyzewski in the mid-to-late 1980s), Van Exel has the advantage of an NBA player’s background, a fact not lost on Drew in the Bucks’ press release:
“Bob and Nick were both important pieces of my staff in Atlanta, and I’m excited that they are joining me on the bench in Milwaukee,” said Drew. “Bob’s merits as a coach have been proven through his past experience, and Nick’s successful career in the NBA gives him a strong platform to mentor and coach our players. They will be dedicated to the task of teaching and building up our young men in order for the Bucks to put a hard-working, committed team on the court.”
Look for more coaches to be added to the staff in the coming weeks.