|Taj Gibson Facebook page|
Taj Gibson is one of the most popular and respected Bulls, both with fans and head coach Tom Thibodeau. Taj has certainly earned this respect over the years, as he has had a very successful career, outperforming the vast majority of NBA players drafted at his position (26th overall in the 2009 draft) or later.
Gibson has certainly earned the "Hard Hat and Lunch Pail" moniker that Bulls' color commentator Stacey King has bestowed upon him. He is known as one of the better defenders in the league, and came into the season as a serious contender for the NBA's Sixth Man of the Year award (he finished a solid 2nd in the voting last season to former Bull and current Clipper Jamal Crawford).
Gibson was drafted as a defender and a rebounder, and he was solid in that role as a rookie. He beat out former #2 overall draft pick Tyrus Thomas for the starting job, and wound up starting 70 games as a rookie, averaging 9.0 points, 7.5 rebounds and 1.3 blocked shots in 26.9 minutes.