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Luol Deng excited about 2012 Olympics in London
by Adam Fluck
Posted on Mar 15
FIBA, the world governing body for basketball, announced on Sunday that Great Britain’s men’s and women’s basketball teams will compete at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London after being granted automatic qualification.
Bulls forward and Great Britain national team member Luol Deng, via his Twitter account @LuolDeng9, reacted to the news that day, saying, “Got the great news we will be playing@London2012. Thanks for all your messages! Can’t wait to play in London.”
Deng elaborated on his opportunity to play in next summer’s Olympics prior to taking on the Wizards Tuesday at the United Center.
“The last three years I’ve been playing with the national team really hoping that I’d get a chance to play in the Olympics,” said Deng. “With the Olympics being in London and announcement that we’ll be in it, I’m excited about that.”
While Great Britain, which has not played basketball at an Olympic games since 1948, might be considered a long shot from placing, it doesn’t bother Deng in the least.
“It’s great for basketball in the UK,” said Deng. “It’s come a long way. Like anyone else, just to get a chance to play in the Olympics is once in a lifetime and a great opportunity. For it to be where we grew up, my friends that played with me on the national team, we have spoken about it and we’re really excited.”
Deng added that as of now, he believes former Bulls teammate Ben Gordon, who was born in London, plans to play as well. Gordon was with Deng and the national team over the summer, though he didn’t play due to an injury.
“He was committed then, so I assume he will,” said Deng of Gordon.
Audio—Bulls forward Luol Deng on Great Britain in the 2012 Olympics (03.15.2011):