Bulls’ Luol Deng out for Game 1

Chicago Bulls forward Luol Deng was finally able to rejoin his team as they prepare for tonight’s Game 1 against the Miami Heat. Still, he won't be able to suit up for the Bulls as they begin their second-round series against the Heat.

Coach Tom Thibodeau told reporters – including K.C. Johnson of The Chicago Tribune – that Deng is still considered day-to-day after being released from the hospital, but the forward has been ruled out for tonight's series opener. He received his release Saturday afternoon, and he was scheduled to fly out to Miami last night.

Deng was initially sidelined due to illness. This was severe enough that the team had him undergo a spinal tap to test for meningitis. While the results were negative, the procedure caused spinal fluid leakage that caused Deng to experience intense migraine headaches and general disorientation. To resolve the issue, Deng had to receive injections of his own blood into the damaged area so that the spinal tap puncture could heal naturally.

According to those that have spoken with Deng, his headaches have mostly subsided, but his back remains sore. The Bulls will likely start Marco Belinelli -- who scored 24 points during Chicago’s deciding Game 7 victory over the Brooklyn Nets -- in place of Deng.

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