The Chicago Bulls front office has been outspoken during the last year about their wish to keep Taj Gibson on the roster. 10-cent totals
The feeling is mutual.
Gibson, who will become a restricted independent agent at the end of next season, knows the Bulls have some other decisions to make before they get down to hammering out an extension, but he’d like to lock something up which would make him a Bull for an extended period of time to come.
“Really, it doesn’t matter (when it happens),” Gibson claimed. “I told (GM) Gar (Forman) and (VP John Paxson) how committed I’m to just being with the Bulls. It’s not a concept in my head to leave Chicago because I adore playing for the Bulls.
Bartelstein confirmed the 2 sides have had initial talks regarding an extension. The sides will meet again later on in the summer once the Bulls wrap up all of the other choices facing them in the short term, including the NBA draft and other roster moves.
Like Gibson, Bartelstein appeared confident the parts could work out an extension given the mutual respect on either side. The veteran agent believes Gibson will continue to thrive in the same environment next season, and most likely for many years to come if and when an extension is hammered out.
Gibson gave himself far more leverage toward an extension in the postseason, averaging just about 10 points and 7 rebounds a game against the 76ers.
With Crane Rose (ACL) and Joakim Noah (ankle) out because of injuries, Gibson was the Bulls most consistent player. The 26 year old accepted that he’s still rehabbing an ankle injury he suffered during the series, but he expects to be in a position to go in a month when he heads to Las Vegas as part of Team USA’s select squad, made of young players across the league who will scrimmage against the National team before they go to the London Olympics.
Gibson, who just completed his 3rd season in the league, is anticipating competing against some of the finest talent in the country.
“I’m thrilled,” he announced. “The training staff is real happy for me. They exclaimed it’s an enormous move, especially being selected; it’s great for my game. Specifically to go in there and learn something from other players, compete. But the whole end result is simply to learn and build self-confidence.”
The power forward thinks the experience will benefit both himself and the Bulls in future times. He knows he has elevated himself into the upper echelon of young players in the league, but he’s trying to stay focused on what’s ahead.
“It’s good, but at the same time I just look at it as going in there and getting better,” Gibson expounded. “Learning from other guys, that is the entire thing, just learning, just having the appropriate kind of mindset, I’m of the opinion that it’s maybe just a week of practicing, but I’m looking forward to improving and using what I learned in our next training camp for the Bulls and our next season.”