''Last year, being a rookie, the league just seemed like a roller coaster,'' he said. ''The consistency factor was tough. Every day, it was something new, you struggle with something new. This year, the first thing I'm trying to focus on is consistency, so the team knows what Luol brings every time.
''To be a great player, or a good player, in this league, that's the No. 1 thing -- consistency.''
Despite still regaining his rhythm following the wrist injury -- he wasn't allowed to play contact basketball until a few days before training camp in October -- Deng is off to a strong start this season. He was averaging 13.6 points and 5.2 rebounds in 30 minutes before the Bulls opened a four-game West Coast swing Monday against the Golden State Warriors at The Arena in Oakland.
''Lu's situation sort of dictated itself because he wasn't quite ready yet. But as you can see, every game he's getting better and better. He may ultimately end up [back] in the lineup at some point.''
For now, Deng said he isn't focused on whether he's starting or coming off the bench.
''With this team, I don't think it matters,'' he said. ''I think that you could play 40 minutes one night and the next night play five. That's just the way it is here, so I don't think it matters here. If you don't play hard, you're not going to play. We're a good enough team where the next guy can come in and play.''