"Rook, I am the best shooter in the league. In the league, understand? And you're up here trying to tell me something?" - Larry Bird to Reggie Miller, as Reggie tried to distract Bird between free throws.

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Luol Deng - SF, 6'9, 220
Los Angeles Lakers - Signed as a free agent in July 2016
       Date of birth: 04/16/1985
       Country: Sudan/Britain
     Drafted (NBA): 7th pick, 2004
     Out of: Duke
  NBA Experience: 13 years
  Hand: Right

2004 NBA Draft NBA Drafted 7th overall by Phoenix.
2004 NBA Draft NBA Draft rights traded by Phoenix to Chicago in exchange for the draft rights to Jackson Vroman (#31), a 2005 first round pick (#21, Nate Robinson) and cash.
16th July, 2004 NBA Signed four year, $10,652,099 rookie scale contract with Chicago. Included team option for 2007/08.
24th October, 2006 NBA Chicago exercised 2007/08 team option.
31st July, 2008 NBA Re-signed by Chicago to a six year, $71,060,000 contract.
6th January, 2014 NBA Traded by Chicago to Cleveland in exchange for Andrew Bynum, a 2015 second round pick (#53, Sir'Dominic Pointer), a 2016 second round pick (#48, Paul Zipser), a protected future first round pick (became a 2017 second round pick, #38, Jordan Bell) and the right to swap 2015 first round picks (not exercised).
15th July, 2014 NBA Signed a two year, $19,866,076 contract with Miami. Included player option for 2015/16.
29th June, 2015 NBA Exercised 2015/16 player option.
7th July, 2016 NBA Signed a four year, $72 million contract with L.A. Lakers.
When: Where:
2003 - 2004 Duke (NCAA)
June 2004 - January 2014 Chicago Bulls (NBA)
January 2014 - June 2014 Cleveland Cavaliers (NBA)
July 2014 - June 2016 Miami Heat (NBA)
July 2016 - present L.A. Lakers (NBA)
From blog:

   2010 Summer League Rosters: New York Knicks

[Eric] Boateng will play for the Great Britain national team this summer, but mainly others won't. Joel Freeland and Ben Gordon just dropped out this week due to injury, and earlier, Robert Archibald had also pulled out. Nick George and Andy Betts have also pulled out, leaving the team with almost no quality left on it, and its chances of qualifying for Eurobasket 2011 in tatters.

This is why Luol Deng is so unbelievably freaking important to us. He is now our everything.

[read full post]

   2017 NBA Manifesto

Luol Deng
SF, 6’9, 220lbs, 32 years old, 13 years of experience

It’s a really old 32. Deng’s usage is down, his efficiency way down, his defence increasingly ineffective, and only the rebounding sustained. Never hugely athletic, Deng is now one of the slowest small forwards in the game, yet a move to power forward does not create a mismatch any more either. Never a spot-up shooter, Deng does not readily fit into an offence designed for such, and nor can he do his own work off the dribble any longer. This is therefore a strange mix of player and team. And it is also a very expensive one, so he'll be back.

Player Plan: Three years and $54 million remaining, with no option years involved. This contract is going to prove to be the one that is the obstacle to the 2018 free agency aspirations. And given his much declined play, it will cost assets to get rid of it. However, it will cost fewer assets the closer to expiring it is. There is no rush to move it this summer; try and redeem some value first, then move it later on.

[read full post]

   Chicago's Last Resort Offseason Plan That Still Manages To Avoid Signing Joe Johnson

Most Bulls offseason plans out there involve finding ways to trade Luol Deng and Kirk Hinrich. The duo have been with the Bulls for a combined 13 years - it's hard to get your head around that sometimes - and yet part of the reason why they're still here are their contracts. The duo are good players, good citizens and decent young veterans, yet they're also overpaid. Walding's contract, directly negotiated by Jerry Reinsdorf, is a year too long and about $3 million annually too much. He's a fine player, averaging 18/7 with good and versatile defense at the age of only 25 - however, he's paid to be a second option when he's really a third one, a non-athlete without much of a dribble and a tendency to miss games due to injury. So despite his talents and deferred salary, he's still slightly overpaid. We understand that.

[read full post]

   Ben Gordon finally commits to Great Britain national team

[...] The difference in talent between Ben Gordon and those incumbents is roughly equal to the difference between the eruption of Krakatoa and a termite farting. By putting together a lineup of Gordon/anyone/Deng/Pops/Archibald, with Freeland and Bryan-Amaning off the bench, Britain are now able to compete with any team; it matters not who the 'anyone' at two guard is. (It would be nice if it was Kelenna Azubuike, who was born in London; however, he is not eligible for a British passport. His parents were not in the country legally at the time of his birth, and Azubuike's passport application was turned down in 2007. It's a shame, because he's the missing piece.)

That lineup is still flawed; after five years of watching Ben Gordon occasionally masquerade as a point guard for my Chicago Bulls, I am left in no doubt that he isn't one. He dribbles too high, shows no obvious ability on the pick and roll, has little passing vision, and just isn't that good at getting the ball over halfcourt every time. The team ideally needs someone that can do that. (Kirk Hinrich is the obvious candidate, but he's cup-tied after having played for Team USA back in 2006. And it might also factor that he has no British heritage.)

Gordon is, however, a bloody fantastic shotmaker. And this can't be underestimated on a team that used Pops Mensah-Bonsu and Jarrett Hart as go-to guys down the stretch of their game versus Spain. With Gordon, Britain would probably have won that game. With Gordon and Deng, they definitely would. The transition of British basketball from humiliating to competitive has been very short and very sweet. It is largely because of Deng, to whom we owe a fantastic debt that we can never repay.


[read full post]

   Chicago's Meticulously Crafted 2011 Offseason Plan That Relies An Awful Lot Upon Guesswork

The nickname Lou Wolding for Luol Deng came about because of the way Bulls PA announcer Tommy Edwards calls Luol's name after a basket. I am hoping it is a nickname that passes into mainstream society, just as "Turk Nowitzki" was starting to for Ersan Ilyasova before someone else took the credit. That person knows who they are.

[read full post]

   The Bulls should trade for Andrew Bynum

The idea of a one-club man is a romanticised ideal in sports, yet one increasingly impossible to achieve in this heightened free agency era. Even Paul Pierce eventually got traded. However, it does occasionally happen, and Luol Deng is one of the few true veterans in this league to have spent his whole career with one team. Indeed, the only players to have been with their current teams longer than Deng has been with Chicago are Kobe Bryant, Dirk Nowitzki, Nick Collison, the Miami duo of Udonis Haslem and Dwyane Wade, and the Spurs trio of Parker, Ginobili and Duncan, while Jameer Nelson and Anderson Varejao are the only other 2004 draftees to have never left the team that first signed them. This kind of longevity, then, is rare - usually, one party is sufficiently disgruntled with the other by now to have moved on.

Things haven't always been plain sailing between Deng and Chicago. The contract which is about to expire was only arrived at in the first place via an ugly and terse negotiations period, while injury-related strife - most notably the Bulls's failure to diagnose a broken leg - has sullied the waters at times. Nevertheless, the Bulls declined this trade supposedly on account of their desire to re-sign Deng. They are said to really, really want that.

This desire to keep Deng is tough to reconcile alongside the news that extension talks are dead. Nonetheless, it seems genuine, if only because it is so logical. Deng is a quality player on the court, a player who makes the most of limited natural ability, and an absolute favourite of Tom Thibodeau on account of his reliability, defensive versatility and high IQ play. These are all things the Bulls prioritise more than most. They are right to want to keep him.

[more at the link]

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