Report: Knicks coach Tom Thibodeau reaching into past for Taj Gibson reunion
New York Knicks head coach Tom Thibodeau has plenty of experience with Taj Gibson, first coaching the veteran big man with the Chicago Bulls and then with the Minnesota Timberwolves. Well, it’s time for another Thibs-Gibson reunion, as the 35-year-old will be signing with the suddenly red-hot Knicks, according to SNY’s Ian Begley and Shams Charania of The Athletic and Stadium.
New York reportedly plans to waive Omari Spellman to make room for Gibson.
It had been reported earlier that the Knicks were looking at bringing Gibson back into the fold, with a Tyson Chandler reunion also mentioned as a possibility. New York declined Gibson’s $10 million team option back in November before the season. He appeared in 62 games for the Knicks last season.
Gibson was a mainstay on Thibodeau’s hard-nosed Bulls teams after getting drafted in 2009. While Gibson started 70 games as a rookie under Vinny Del Negro, he was moved to a bench role under Thibs after Chicago signed Carlos Boozer. Gibson helped anchor the Bulls’ Bench Mob with his defense and energy.
The 6-foot-9 big man spent seven-plus seasons in Chicago before getting traded to the Oklahoma City Thunder in 2017. Gibson finished the 2016-17 se ason with the Thunder and then signed with the Timberwolves in the offseason, reuniting with Thibodeau. He spent two seasons in Minnesota before heading home to play in New York.
The Knicks are currently dealing with injuries in the frontcourt, including rookie Obi Toppin and Nerlens Noel. Julius Randle and Mitchell Robinson have been playing major minutes because of it, but they have been playing well as part of New York’s surprising 5-3 start to this campaign.
Taj Gibson will provide a bit more depth in the frontcourt and a trusty veteran for Tom Thibodeau to turn to in certain situations.