The Luol Deng Thread


lethalweapon3

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manute-bol-luol-deng.jpg

 

In the aftermath of the fallout from Danny Ferry getting his intel apparently from Dice Clay, I figured it would be nice just to relay some good things about one Mr. Luol Deng. If you find more interesting things regarding Luol, feel free to post those here.

 

luol-deng-nba-brooklyn-nets-cleveland-ca

 

Lost amidst much of the hullaballoo of the past few days was that Deng is the reigning recipient of the NBA's J. Walter Kennedy Citizenship Award. He and his family fled Sudan, when he was 5 years old, amidst the 22-year old Second Sudanese Civil War. He found his way into basketball through his mentor, Manute Bol, who was training his brother Ajou. A British national, Deng now finds ways to contribute to the betterment of society across three continents.

 

http://www.nba.com/cavaliers/releases/deng-citizenship-award-140415

 

“It’s an honor to be recognized for any award, but this one is special because it represents who I am as a person and where I came from. What I’m most proud of is that my family can look back after my career is over and realize that I was able to make a difference on and off the basketball court. That is something that tells the true story as to who I am as a person, someone who cares about his community and wants to improve the lives of others.

 

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hCKjSN8A5Tc

 

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The two-time All-Star forward recently recorded a public service announcement for the EnoughProject.org, urging peace during a time of renewed conflict in his native South Sudan. In the video, he tells young people, "Look around you, and reach out. Make peace among those who are fighting. Forgive one another and encourage others to forgive. Build trust with people who fear each other. You are young, and if you are wise, you will build bridges with people your age that will last a lifetime. It is not too late to start…but it is not too soon either.''

 

 

 

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Here's what Bulls GM John Paxson had to say about him in 2007, when Deng received the NBA's Sportsmanship Award. His is the first, and only, foreign NBA player to have received this honor.

 

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/05/03/AR2007050301416_pf.html

 

"He really does epitomize everything I had hoped for as a person and a basketball player," general manager John Paxson said. "I think it's one of the reasons we've gotten to the level we're at this year. I'm truly proud of him. I think the world of him as a person and as a player."

 

 

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~lw3

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HE HAS A LITTLE AFRICAN IN HIM

These words were recently used to describe me. It would ordinarily make any African parent proud to hear their child recognized for their heritage.

I’m proud to say I actually have a lot of African in me, not just “a little.” For my entire life, my identity has been a source of pride and strength. Among my family and friends, in my country of South Sudan and across the broader continent of Africa, I can do no greater privilege than to do what I love for a living while also representing my heritage on the highest stage. Unfortunately, the comment about my heritage was not made with the same respect and appreciation.

Concerning my free agency, the focus should purely have been on my professionalism and my ability as an athlete. Every person should have the right to be treated with respect and evaluated as an individual rather than be reduced to a stereotype. I am saddened and disappointed that this way of thinking still exists today. I am even more disturbed that it was shared so freely in a business setting.

However, there is comfort in knowing that there are people who aren’t comfortable with it and have the courage to speak up. In the same way a generalization should not define a group of people, the attitude of a few should not define a whole organization or league.

Ultimately, I’m thankful to be with an organization that appreciates me for who I am and has gone out of its way to make me feel welcome.

 

 

That last statement stings, just a lil bit. As it should.

 

~lw3

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I was just thinking about how awkward it would have been if this came out after he signed with us.

 

If Ferry felt the need to read that "scouting report," I doubt he ever had the slightest intention of signing Deng.

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