The landscape of the NBA hasn’t greatly changed, but the changes that have been made will impact the Chicago Bulls 2014-2015 season. Suddenly, Taj Gibson is Chicago Bulls most important player when you factor in his defense, physical play, and intangibles.

“It’s Derrick Rose, you stupid moron!”, you insist. I understand that Rose is important, but we don’t know what we are getting from Derrick. “He looked great before Paul George snapped his leg in half, you jackass!” you remind me. Great, but he is one of 15-20 very good point guards. Kyrie Irving is one of them. Therefore, they cancel out in this argument.

With Kevin Love coming over to the Eastern Conference, and a healthy (who knows for how long) Al Horford returning to the Atlanta Hawks, Taj Gibson’s role will be drastically magnified.

Gibson is a grinder. He’s blue-collar defender, with an offensive game improving season after season. Taj improved his stats to career highs in points, blocks and FT% because Tom Thibodeau actually provided him playing time. It’s not often that a power forward cares about FT%, but Gibson does, and clearly worked on it during the summer of 2013.

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With three of the top five PF in the league now in the Eastern Conference in Love, Horford, and Monroe, Gibson will have to improve yet again. His job is never done, and I’m pretty sure he’s perfectly fine with that.

 

Photo Credit: NBC Chicago

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