Bittersweet news today, as Luol Deng is retiring. And he decided to do so as a member of the Chicago Bulls after signing a ceremonial contract.
Deng, a two-time All-Star, is all over the franchise leader board. He’s tied for fourth by playing in parts of 10 seasons with the Bulls. He’s sixth in games played, fifth in minutes, fourth in points, fifth in field goals, ninth in rebounds, fifth in steals, seventh in 3-pointers and eighth in free throws.
Deng, a 2-way stalwart from the age of 19, was a major contributor of two Bulls ‘eras’: the playoff appearances with fellow ‘04 draftee Ben Gordon (and Kirk Hinrich, Andres Nocioni, that whole gang). Then again with the 2010-11 team led by Derrick Rose’s MVP campaign that made the Eastern Conference Finals.
Deng should have his number retired in Chicago, though the Bulls are historically not very forthcoming with that honor.
Luol Deng finishes with the 6th-most win shares (58.4) in Chicago Bulls History behind:— Bulls Gold (@BullsGold) October 17, 2019
Horace Grant (62.4)
Artis Gilmore (66.5)
Chet Walker (67)
Scottie Pippen (99.7)
Michael Jordan (204.5)
It’s cool that Luol Deng wanted to do this as a Bull and planned it with ownership and management given their past conflicts. Him being the bigger man is no surprise, he’s probably the biggest man!
I, a very small man, would likely still hold a grudge for being shipped out of town minutes after a fake extension offer. That, or nearly killing me.
After being traded to Cleveland in 2014 to save the franchise cash and obtaining a draft pick that wound up being even more cash. Deng went on to earn approximately 90 million dollars from the Heat and Lakers. So maybe that’s reason to be more than happy with how things turned out.