Article

Deng yet to commit to Team GB

16 February 2013 12:46

Chicago Bulls forward Luol Deng is unlikely to play for Team Great Britain at the European Championship in September.

Deng, who is preparing for the NBA All-Star clash on Sunday, appears set to miss the 24-team tournament in Slovenia.

While the 27-year-old is yet to make a decision on whether he will play, he said he needed a rest after competing at the London Olympics in his off-season last year.

"I haven't made my decision yet," Deng said.

"I know that I will be with the team. I said it before, although I'm not sure 100 percent if I'll be playing, most likely I won't be.

"I would like to have a summer, especially the one coming up, off.

"Last year, I wanted to do the Olympics and I showed how much I wanted to do it, but this summer coming up, I think I'll tone it down a little bit more.

"It doesn't change the fact of whether I will be with the team or not, but I said that even for the Olympics."

Meanwhile, Miami Heat star Dwyane Wade believes Los Angeles Lakers' Kobe Bryant is the greatest player in the current NBA era.

Wade favourably compared the NBA's latest crop of stars to Larry Bird and Magic Johnson's rivalry in the 1980s, and Michael Jordan's dominance for the Chicago Bulls in the 1990s.

"I think this is going to be a phenomenal game of basketball," he said.

"When you look back at this era, there's going to be a lot of players to pick from and talk about their greatness, and how well we've done compared to previous guys.

"So this is a good era for basketball and it would be led by Kobe Bryant – the greatest player of our era, this young era right here.

"I think it's going to be a great game, especially with all the young talent coming over and that will only make teams and the league better, so we're in good hands."

Houston's James Harden is savouring the All-Star experience, with the shooting guard set to make his first appearance at the star-studded event.

Harden is expected to feature despite struggling with an ankle injury, taking his place as the Rockets' only All-Star game representative.

"I'm definitely enjoying it, especially as this is my first one," he said.

"It would be different if that was seven years ago or whatever the case may be, but this is my first one. I'm just excited and happy all at once."

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