Bulls F Deng out vs. Magic

Updated: March 11, 2010, 10:59 PM ET
By Nick Friedell | ESPNChicago.com

ORLANDO, Fla. -- As expected, Luol Deng will not play on Thursday night against the Magic and probably won't suit up against the Heat in Miami on Friday. He will be replaced in the starting lineup by rookie James Johnson.

"Day to day," Bulls coach Vinny Del Negro said after Thursday morning's shootaround. "He's got a strained calf. I don't expect him to play [Thursday] night. [Friday] night, we'll see. I think he could be out for a few days -- you just don't know yet."

Deng hopes to be able to play on Tuesday night against the Grizzlies in Memphis.

In the meantime, Brad Miller (thumb) and Taj Gibson (plantar fasciitis) are expected to play.

Nick Friedell | email

Chicago Bulls beat reporter
Nick Friedell is the Chicago Bulls beat reporter for ESPN Chicago. Friedell is a graduate of the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University and joined ESPNChicago.com for its launch in April 2009.