Luol Deng, 2012 Olympics: Britain 'constantly disappointed' by 'no support' from Bulls & NBA

LONDON, ENGLAND - AUGUST 20: Luol Deng of Britain tussles with Yi Li of China during the LOCOG Test Events for London 2012 London International Basketball Invitational match between Great Britain and China at Basketball Arena on August 20, 2011 in London, England. (Photo by Tom Shaw/Getty Images)

Luol Deng is going to play for Great Britain in the 2012 Summer Olympics in London. This seems to not even be up for discussion anymore.

Chris Spice, the performance director for the British national team, recently whined about a lack of support from the Bulls and the NBA:

"Luol Deng is hugely committed to the British Basketball program and he has maintained this stance despite recent pressure for him not to play after injuring his wrist during the highly-demanding shortened NBA season," Spice's statement said.

[...]

"Unfortunately, we have had no support from the NBA, which remains a constant disappointment."

Boo-friggin'-hoo.

Amateur basketball teams preparing to compete in exhibition tournaments are pretty much entitled to no support from The Association and professional franchises.

Playing in these Olympic Games is delaying Deng's decision as to whether or not have his wrist surgically repaired to August, instead of -- you know? -- now. Deng tore ligaments in his left wrist early in the regular season and the later he has the surgery, the more time he'll miss next season.

Obviously, the Bulls interests are for Deng not to play in the Olympics. There's not really much reason to be interested in him playing. It isn't for fear of further injury, but that Deng is putting his offseason tasks on hold and will potentially miss the first couple of months of the 2012-13 season because of this delay.

The Collective Bargaining Agreement between the NBA players' union and the league "prohibits the Bulls from preventing Deng to play", the report adds, but -- no matter how often I keeping reading things like this -- I struggle to understand what this means, in terms of where the Bulls' limits lay.

But, either way, the Bulls ought to pursue their interests within the rules to the highest degree of their ability. Even if you support Deng's decision, you can't hold it against the Bulls to take their large investment in Deng seriously.

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