The Chicago Bulls never wanted Luol Deng to play in the 2012 Summer Olympics, but the small forward was determined to represent his country. Deng needs surgery to repair torn ligaments in left wrist, but he postponed the operation to play for his adopted home country as London hosted the summer games. On Monday, Deng's gutsy effort and dogged determination paid off when Great Britain won its first basketball game in the Olympics since 1948.
Great Britain defeated China 90-58 without much help from Deng. Deng finished with just six points, three rebounds and four assists on 3-for-11 shooting, but his teammates were able to carry the day. Kieron Achara came off the bench to score 16, Nate Reinking added 12 and Joel Freeland scored 10 in the victory. Deng ends the tournament with an average of 15.8 points per game on 31.4 percent shooting. He shot just 20 percent from three-point range.
Now Deng is slated to get surgery, assuming the Bulls let him. While being without their do-it-all small forward until January would certainly hurt the Bulls in the short-term, it far outweighs the option of making him gut it out and play all season with the torn ligaments. Hopefully Tom Thibodeau agrees.