Jan 21, 2013, 2:33 PM EDT
UPDATE 8:05 p.m. ET: Deng is out, reports K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune.
The Lakers have lost eight of 10, and their struggles this season have been well-documented. They may catch a break Monday night in Chicago, where the Bulls may be without their leading scorer.
“We’ll know tonight,” Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau said. “Still day to day, a little bit better today, we’ll see tonight.”
Deng averages 17.4 points per game on the season. If he’s unable to go, Jimmy Butler, who started Saturday and played 48 minutes while scoring 18 points in Deng’s absence, would be expected to get the start in his place.
Joakim Noah, who was benched for the fourth quarter and overtime in Saturday’s loss, is expected to be available and to start. Thibodeau said after the morning shootaround that he expects him to respond well despite his poor performance the previous game.
“He understands,” Thibodeau said. “The thing is he’s been around. The team has to come first, that’s the most important thing. Sometimes that happens in-game, not a big deal.”
“He’s responded well since I’ve been here so I always expect that,” Thibodeau said. “I expect the best out of him.”
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