Taj Gibson shines when Wolves need it most


After 14 seasons, the Wolves are headed back to the playoffs and Taj Gibson deserves to be recognized for his contributions. 

The Minnesota Timberwolves are heading to the playoffs after outlasting the Denver Nuggets in overtime on Wednesday. A large part of the reason they wound up with a win was the performance of Taj Gibson. Gibson was a game time decision to play and not only did he play, he came up huge in the game’s biggest moments.

Jimmy Butler, Karl-Anthony Towns and Andrew Wiggins get the majority of the publicity but make no mistake, the Wolves are not in the playoffs if Gibson is not active. Gibson is the glue that keeps this team together and he showed how important he is on Wednesday night.

Although his stat line isn’t all that impressive (six rebounds, two steals, one block, eight points), Gibson’s fingerprints are all over the elimination game. The easiest example is Denver’s final possession of regulation. It was a tie game, around ten seconds left to play and the Wolves needed a stop to extend their season. Ball goes to Jokic, who finished with 30 points on the night and not only does Gibson get the stop, he knocks the ball away, controls it and calls a time-out.

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Taj Gibson might be the only player on this team capable of doing what he did on that possession. He can guard multiple positions and his experience in these types of situations are exactly why Tom Thibodeau brought him aboard. Jimmy Butler had a great game, Karl-Anthony Towns played really well, even Wiggins was engaged but Gibson was incredible.