Press Conference: Luol Deng

Freshman forward Luol Deng met the media Saturday to discuss the Regional Final, his life's journey, and his career to date at Duke.

On Chris Duhon

"Chris has been my roommate and he's been a great help. He's been in these situations, we only have a few people on the team who have been past the Sweet 16 and have actually won it all. So he's kind of been on me because I've had the mindset where I've had games where I would show up and games where I wouldn't and he relayed to me just how important it was to show up for every game."

"Chris is our leader and, with how he plays out there, we follow him. We don't just listen to him, we also see the things that he does. So it's really easy to follow him. We know the injury that he's playing with and it's just unbelievable the heart he has. The way he's playing, it makes it a lot easier for us to just follow him."

On picking up basketball and realizing the significance of the NCAA Tournament in the United States

"It all started in England when my brother played for UConn. He was redshirting the year when they beat Duke in the final. I was watching that game and that's really where it all started and I wanted to be in that situation to just come over and play college basketball. It was after that game that my parents made the decision that I should come over to the U.S. and play basketball."

"My decision is going to be coming from me and my family and what's best for us. I still think, in my game, I have a lot to learn. I've learned a lot this year, but I still feel like there's a lot I could add to my game. I don't want to ever go to the next level and not be able to play and have to sit down on the bench and be in a situation where I would just have to learn."

On education

"That's one of the reasons I'm at Duke. Especially with my father, education is very important to my family. I just feel like attitude towards education and how I do in school is one of the best things I can give back to my family."

"Shelden (Williams) has been very dominant, I don't think there's one player in college basketball who could guard him one-on-one. So teams have to double-team him and when that happens, I just have to get good opportunities. We're going to have to look inside. Just like Illinois, with Xavier a lot of their points come from their guards."

"It's very hard to work on your skills (in Africa) if you don't have the coaches. A lot of kids in Africa can't afford to join clubs or to go to where you're taught exactly how to play the game. A lot of times in order to score, you would back up your opponent because you're not that good with the ball. But I think with me because I went to England at the age of 12 and was playing with older guys, I was forced to play as a point guard and that really helped me to develop my outside skills. I think everybody just has a different upbringing and is different with where they are with their skill because of the situation they're in."

"Just like Illinois, a lot of their (Xavier's) points come from their guards and we've got take that away just like we did yesterday. I thought our perimeter did a very good job with their guards. In the first half yesterday, Illinois' big guys did a great job. They were really in the game. With Xavier, we've got to think about their guards but we also can't forget about their big guys."

"I liked basketball (as a child), but not as much as I liked soccer. And I was good at soccer and when you're good at something, you don't want to start something where you don't know how good you're going to be at it. And in my school in England, basketball wasn't very big. Everybody came to watch soccer and all my friends played soccer, so I was really into soccer until I joined a club in England. Then it felt like basketball was important so I kept going and that's how basketball started to grow with me."

"We're having a lot of fun. We're very close as a group and it's just very exciting. The more you achieve, it just brings you a lot closer. I don't know if you guys see it out there on the court, but we're really having a lot of fun and we just want to keep this going as long as we can."


Blue Devil Digest Top Stories