Taj Gibson tweaked his ankle early in the Chicago Bulls' matchup against the Boston Celtics last night. Fortunately for the injury-riddled Bulls, Gibson was able to play through the pain and contribute a solid 13 points. Even better, the ankle shouldn't keep Gibson from playing Wednesday against the New York Knicks.
According to Aggrey Sam of CSN Chicago, the ankle injury is a re-aggravation from an injury Gibson suffered in the playoffs last season. He plant and felt the ankle give in the first half, but it wasn't enough to sideline the 27-year old power forward.
“I just pushed off and re-aggravated it from the playoffs last year. It’s been nagging me, but I just kept playing and had to hurry up and ice it down,” Gibson said about the injury. “It was just one of those plays. I tried to plant and I just re-aggravated my ankle, that’s all."The Bulls have lost key players throughout this season, so Gibson's effort was all the more important. The team lost Kirk Hinrich three times this season, they lost Richard Hamilton, and they have been without Derrick Rose for the entire year. Yet, they are still holding strong in the Eastern Conference. And a big part of that is play from players like Gibson.
Gibson is averaging 6.3 points per game and 4.6 rebounds per game this year. However, his presence is felt regardless of the numbers in the box score. Gibson is solid on defense and help the Bulls get stops when they need them. This quality, combined with his ability to play through his injury, makes him a valuable part of the Bulls' plans for staying in contention while they wait for Rose to return.
Chicago is currently 14-10. They are fourth in the Eastern Conference standings.