What should the Knicks expect from Taj Gibson?

New York Knicks center Taj Gibson (67) dribbles against Toronto Raptors forward Chris Boucher (25) during the first half at Madison Square Garden
Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

To fill the void left by the injured Mitchell Robinson, the New York Knicks signed veteran big man Taj Gibson to a 1-year deal, who is expected to join the team sometime during their West Coast trip.

Familiar face enters the fold

Gibson is a familiar face in Knicks land, as he donned the orange and blue for three seasons from 2019-2022. In those three seasons, Gibson averaged 5.3 points and 4.7 rebounds per game, coming off the bench for 18.3 minutes per game.

Gibson is also very familiar with Knicks head coach Tom Thibodeau, playing under the coach for both the Chicago Bulls and Minnesota Timberwolves in the past. After being released by the Washington Wizards, the 38-year-old Gibson now returns for his second stint with the Knicks.

What does Gibson provide for the Knicks?

Gibson should provide the Knicks with depth on the interior in Robinson’s absence, as the center rotation of Jericho Sims and Isaiah Hartenstein has left New York undersized. When Robinson returns, Gibson can still provide the Knicks with depth, as Josh Hart has been left with the duties of backup power forward, once again leaving the Knicks at a size disadvantage.

Gibson, a 14-year NBA veteran, will also provide the Knicks with a new leader in the locker room and a mentor to the young players on the roster. Gibson has earned the Knicks’ respect for his leadership and professionalism, and he likely played a factor in the team bringing him back.

Gibson’s presence will be important for the upcoming stretch of games

Gibson will join the Knicks during their current west coast road trip and will be vital to a team that is facing a tough road ahead, with their next 10 games all being against teams currently over .500, and 7 of those being on the road.

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