Friday, January 17, 2014
Scouts Takes: Love for Luol Deng deal
By Marc Stein
Western Conference scout on the Cavs’ acquisition of Luol Deng:
“I’m a huge Deng fan. He’s such a perpetual-motion guy, such a pro. It’s a trade I’d have done in a heartbeat.
“People want to say that the Cavs are one of the biggest disappointments [of the season], but this is a talented group. And Deng brings a consistency and a level of professionalism that they haven’t had for a while. Let’s see if it rubs off.
“I’m a huge [Anderson] Varejao fan, too. You put him with Deng and you finally have a couple guys that want to defend. They’re all still learning how to play together -- I don’t think we know yet how all these personalities will mesh -- but they need to put a lot more into defending collectively than they have up 'til now. Which is unusual to say about a Mike Brown team.
“I thought they laid down [as a team] several times pre-Deng. And it really surprised me that they didn’t rally around [Andrew] Bynum quitting on them, because I think most teams would have tried to use that as a rallying point. But Deng ... I don’t care how much [Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau] played him these last few years. It’s just in his nature to play hard all the time.
“Kyrie Irving is an unbelievable talent -- and I think [Dion] Waiters wants to be Kyrie Irving -- but those young guys need to see [Deng in action] and learn how to approach the game like he does."
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