Luol Deng Has Lost 15 Pounds Since Spinal Tap

Chicago Bulls forward Luol Deng still doesn’t know when he’ll be able to play again. Now out of the hospital after a week-long stay, Deng says he’s lost 15 pounds since a spinal tap was performed, and is still feeling very weak. (Oh, and Luol also revealed a previously unreported thumb fracture from earlier this season.) Per the Chicago Tribune: “Deng is adamant he will play even five minutes if he is able. Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau, of course, calls Deng day to day. But the stark reality remains: It’s possible, if not likely, that Deng, who can’t even endure exertion without headaches, will miss the remainder of these Eastern Conference semifinals against the Heat. And if that’s not enough, Kirk Hinrich remains doubtful with his severely bruised left calf. Hinrich underwent treatment and did some rehabilitation work in a pool Thursday after undergoing a second MRI exam, which a source said showed similar damage to muscle fibers that the first test indicated. ‘It’s just not progressing the way we had hoped,’ Hinrich said. […] ‘I did the spinal tap and, after that, I just didn’t respond well,’ Deng said. ‘I started having severe headaches, was struggling to walk. I started feeling really weak. I started throwing up, (had) constant diarrhea. I couldn’t control my body really. Because of that, I lost a lot of weight. And I still don’t feel right. I was really scared. I’ve never been through anything like that my whole life. It was scary for me, scary for everyone around me.’ Even on Thursday, eight days after the spinal tap, Deng said he felt unable to engage in basketball activity. He said is trying to hydrate and eat as much as possible to increase his stamina. ‘I want to play, but I don’t know what I can do,’ he said. ‘I haven’t done anything. It really sucks. I’m weak and I have headaches. When I’m moving around a lot, my headaches increase. I tried to shoot a little bit and I struggled. I couldn’t do it.’ Deng hasn’t played since Game 5 of the Nets series and said watching from afar in Chicago while his teammates split the first two games in Miami hurt him in a different manner. ‘It’s hard, man,’ Deng said. ‘We’ve had a long season. I’ve played with a lot of injuries. I’ve gone through the torn ligament in the wrist. I had a fractured thumb earlier this year. I played with it. I went through all that to be able to play. I didn’t think something besides an injury would keep me out. And that’s what makes it really hard. I don’t know what you can do.'”