While speaking with the media today, Coach Tom Thibodeau confirmed that starting small forward Luol Deng has a torn ligament in his left wrist. Deng injured the wrist Saturday night against the Bobcats, and missed the game against the Nets on Monday while consulting second opinions about his course of action.
Deng thus far had claimed that the wrist was “fine” and that he was working to get back. However Lu came out today and confirmed that he “…knew it was something serious when it happened.”
As of now, Deng plans to try and play through the pain without surgery, but he will take at least a few weeks off until the pain subsides.
When asked why he is putting off surgery, which he will likely have to have in the offseason regardless, Deng replied,
“I really feel like we have a very good chance of doing something special. I feel that without the surgery I will be fine. I just know what I can and can’t do with it. I think I will be very effective out there. There will be days where it’s sore. We’re going to try to control how sore it gets. Everybody’s body responds differently. I’m very confident I’ll be able to handle it.”
Especially remembering that Deng missed a significant amount of time in 2005 to end his rookie year with the same injury in his other hand, it’s great to see Deng trying to play down the injury and tough it out.
Unlike the turf toe that Rose has, the torn ligament cannot get any worse by playing through it. Kobe Bryant has played through a similar, if less serious version, of this injury throughout the season.
Deng is listed by Thibs as “week to week.”