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Tuesday, May 7, 2013
Deng, Hinrich unlikely for Game 2

ESPNChicago.com

Chicago Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau said Tuesday that he isn't sure Luol Deng will travel to Miami for Game 2 of the Eastern Conference semifinals against the Heat, and Kirk Hinrich said the calf injury that has kept him out of the last four games hasn't changed.

It's unlikely either player will be available when the Bulls try to take a 2-0 series lead on Wednesday.

Deng has spent parts of the last six days in a hospital dealing with aftereffects of a spinal tap that was conducted to test for spinal meningitis. After the Bulls won Game 1 on Monday, Deng tweeted a picture of himself in a hospital bed with the caption: "So proud of my team, man. This bed might be good luck after all."

"We're trying to weigh whether it's better for him to start doing activity back home," Thibodeau said early Tuesday.

In the afternoon, Thibodeau added: "I spoke to him this morning and he said he wanted to see, to get to the gym and get some shots up."

Even if Deng does fly to Miami, Thibodeau was non-committal about whether he would play him.

"He's struggling with this illness," Bulls executive vice president of basketball operations John Paxson said on "The Carmen & Jurko Show" on ESPN 1000. "It's much worse than we thought, and he thought, so we're not sure what the deal is there yet.

"We'll see what happens. We get the medical report today on him."

Hinrich said he is getting treatment on his calf and hoping for the best.

"The swelling and stuff is looking better," Hinrich said. "The coloring of it is looking better. But as far as functioning right now, moving, I'm still having lots of trouble." He said he'll "just keep getting treatment and go from there."

Paxson said Hinrich still has bleeding in his calf.

"It's just a difficult injury," Paxson said. "It's an impact injury in his calf. He basically got hit square on it. There's still, from what I understand, there's still some bleeding in that calf.

"He tries. He's gone out there and tried to force himself to see how far he can push it. We keep thinking every day he'll get a little bit better. What that means, I don't know."

Thibodeau said Tuesday afternoon that Hinrich was "going to go through some stretching and some rehab stuff and see how it feels."

Add to those injuries the absence of Derrick Rose, who hasn't shut the door on a possible return during this series, and the Bulls remain a short-handed team.

"We're planning right now, I guess, playing with what we have," Paxson said. "We'll go to battle with the guys we've got."

Thibodeau smiled when asked by ESPN if Rose would return in the series.

"We'll see. You never know," he said.

ESPNChicago.com's Nick Friedell contributed to this story.