CHICAGO (AP) -Restricted free agent forward Luol Deng and the Chicago Bulls have agreed to six-year contract that could be worth as much as $80 million, according to a person within the league who is familiar with the situation.
The person spoke on the condition of anonymity because an official announcement had not been made Wednesday morning, but was expected later in the day or Thursday.
The new deal was reported earlier by the Chicago Tribune, Chicago Sun-Times and ESPN.com, which said the contract would include $71 million in guaranteed money.
Deng averaged 17 points and 6.3 rebounds last season, while shooting 47.9 percent. That marked a drop from 2006-07, when he scored 18 points a game with 7.1 rebounds, while making 51.7 percent of his shots. Deng had rejected a five-year contract extension last October that was worth $57.5 million.
A four-year pro out of Duke, the 6-foot-9 Deng has career averages of 15.6 points and 6.4 rebounds.
After three straight playoff appearances and a trip to the Eastern Conference semifinals, the Bulls faltered in 2007-08, finishing 33-49 in a season that saw both head coach Scott Skiles and interim coach Jim Boylan lose their jobs.
The Bulls are hoping Deng will be a big part of their future along with Derrick Rose, a guard out of Memphis selected by Chicago with the No. 1 pick in last month's draft.
Guard Ben Gordon, who rejected a five-year, $50 million contract before last season, also is a restricted free agent.
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