Luol Deng has had one of the biggest falls from grace that we have seen from a current NBA player in quite some time. Not too long ago, Deng was part of the Chicago Bulls team with Derrick Rose and Joakim Noah. That team won 60-plus games while being title contenders.

Deng was just recently bought out by the Los Angeles Lakers. He will become a free agent. In Los Angeles, he was barely getting any playing time. What happened to him?

A great start

Deng was drafted in 2004 with the 7th pick. He was drafted by the Phoenix Suns but traded to the Bulls. Deng finish All-Rookie first team that season. Deng was a big part of the Bulls success of the mid-to-late-2000s. He helped the Bulls finished with a 62-20 record in the 2010-2011 season. That team made it all the way to the Eastern Conference Finals and many thought the would be the start of the Bulls rise to the top.

In his time with the Bulls, Deng became a two-time all-star, made the all-rookie first team and was on the all-defensive second team. Deng was then traded to the Cleveland Cavaliers during the 2013-2014 season. He then signed with the Miami Heat that offseason and he stayed there until 2016.

The summer of 2016 is where it seemed to go downhill. He signed with the Lakers on a four-year, $72 million deal which had a lot of people scratching his head as he was having one of his worst seasons. In 2017, Magic Johnson became the president of basketball operations. This is where Deng stopped playing meaningful minutes. In the 2017-2018 season, Deng would only play in one game.

What Happened?

There are many possible factors to what happened to Deng’s downfall. One factor could be injuries. Deng has not played over 70 games since the 2015-2016 season.

Another possible factor could be a spinal tap he had in 2013 as he was diagnosed with meningitis, this would turn out to be the worst thing to happen in his career. His body had a negative response which caused a spinal fluid leak from his body almost caused him to lose his life. The crazy thing about it is that the Bulls misdiagnosed Deng as he did not even have meningitis in the first place.

One more factor could possibly be age as Deng is 33 years old and is not really in his prime anymore.

Deng possibly still has a lot left in the tank and nobody would want to see his career end prematurely.

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