The Chicago Bulls are in the thick of a major roster overhaul. After Derrick Rose was traded away to the New York Knicks, serviceable big man Taj Gibson could be next according to new NBA trade rumors. The Bulls are very active on the trade front after a disappointing finish in the 2015-16 NBA season.
The Bulls could also lose front court starters Joakim Noah and Pau Gasol in free agency, but this hasn’t stopped the team from shopping Gibson. The 6-foot-9 power forward is expendable at this point as the arrival of Robin Lopez will give stability to the team’s front court of the future, consisting of Nikola Mirotic, Bobby Portis and Cristiano Felicio.
League sources told Chicago Sun Times that the Bulls have already talked to several teams regarding a potential deal involving Gibson. The 31-year-old Brooklyn native will make $8.95 million next season.
The Phoenix Suns is an ideal trade partner for the Bulls as both teams have pieces the other team needs. Suns general manager Ryan McDonough values grit and toughness, something Gibson can provide right off the bat. Gibson could get a big role in Phoenix, where he will man the frontline alongside Tyson Chandler and Alex Len.
Another team that may find value in Gibson is the Houston Rockets. The Rockets may be interested in Gibson to be a reliable help defender, especially if Dwight Howard bolts out. Gibson will be tasked to carry heavy defensive assignments throughout dry stretches during the regular season.
The Rockets are expected to reorganize their frontcourt with Howard’s expected departure. The former All-Star opted out of his contract with the Rockets and will likely sign elsewhere, considering his tumultuous relationship with James Harden.
The team that ultimately lands Gibson will acquire a solid front court reserve. According to Basketball Reference, Gibson consistently averages 8.6 points and 6.3 rebounds per 26 minutes of play. His 52.6 field-goal percentage last season was the highest in his entire NBA career.