Luol Deng may not need surgery

Updated: June 29, 2012, 7:35 PM ET
ESPNChicago.com

Chicago Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau said Friday he does not think Luol Deng will need surgery on his left wrist, and he expects the All-Star forward to be in camp on time after he represents the United Kingdom in the Olympics.

"He's feeling a lot better; his wrist is a lot stronger," Thibodeau said on "The Waddle & Silvy Show" on ESPN 1000. "I think it's going to work out well."

When asked if Deng would have surgery, Thibodeau said: "No, I don't think so. The way it is right now, he's going to play in those (Olympic) Games, he's going to come back and continue his training. He said his wrist is feeling a lot better."

When asked if Deng should be in camp on time, Thibodeau said: "I believe so."

Bulls general manager Gar Forman was also optimistic on Deng's prognosis for next season.

"That's the hope (that surgery is unnecessary)," Forman told ESPN 1000's "The Carmen, Jurko and Harry Show" on Firday. "His wrist, he's continued to do a lot of rehab on it. And he's been working out on a regular basis. His wrist has gotten stronger and is feeling better. I know that's what Luol hopes for and that's what we hope for.

Deng tore a ligament in his left wrist in late January. It was believed he was putting off surgery to help the Bulls in a championship run and then to represent the UK in the London Games. Deng's family escaped war-torn Sudan and fled to Egypt and then to London, which is why his loyalty is so strong to the UK. He became a British citizen in 2006.

Forman was quick to shoot down the notion that the Bulls ever discouraged Deng from playing in this summer's Olympics.

"When the season ended ... what we wanted to do is sit down with Luol, and we wanted to review all the information and visit with our medical staff and put together a plan that was best moving forward," Forman said. "So there was nothing confrontational or adversarial by any means. What we want is the same thing that Luol wants. We want what's best for him. At the end of the day, I think that's how it's played out."

Deng's health situation became even more important when Derrick Rose tore his left ACL on April 28. Rose underwent surgery on May 16, and is expected to miss 8-12 months. If Deng undergoes surgery after the Olympics, he could miss the first couple months of next season, which means the Bulls would be without their two All-Stars for an extended period.

Forman on Thursday tried to quash rumors that the Bulls were shopping Deng, who recently said he believes "there is always to some extent to truth behind rumors."

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