It’s no secret that Taj Gibson is a vital part of the Bulls future, and he’s already won over the legions of Bulls fans who have seen him play. That coupled with the utter failure of Carlos Boozer to produce consistently makes for a killer battle at power forward during camp.
The money factor is the reason the Bulls haven’t cut Boozer loose yet and it could be a weak excuse for them to start Boozer this year. After 2013, the Bulls will likely amnesty Boozer meaning this season is a make or break one for the bald screaming machine. It’s because of this that Boozer will likely get more minutes over Gibson but if Boozer keeps up his recent style of play that could violently shift.
Gibson has proven he can start at forward and he’s been constantly pushed aside by management — something he won’t forget when it comes time to renew his contract at the end of the season. First Tyrus Thomas took his minutes, and when he was traded to give Gibson more minutes, the Bulls gave Boozer $75MM to be the new starter.
If Boozer keeps getting minutes over Gibson, Taj is not going to simply return to Chicago for the hell of it, he’ll want serious cash — cash he’ll get elsewhere (as demonstrated by Omer Asik). Gibson has earned the right to start and it will be interesting to see if the Bulls realize this in training camp and give Gibson the starting role he deserves.