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Should Knicks Bring 'Revered' Taj Gibson Back?

Bringing Taj Gibson back to the New York Knicks would be a cheap transaction that could lead to rich mentorship.

Even with no draft picks, the New York Knicks have hadquite the offseason: they trade power forward Obi Toppin to the Indiana Pacers, signed Golden State Warriors shooting guard Donte DiVincenzo, and successfully convinced Josh Hart to enact his $12.9 million player option.

On top of it all, they've been searching for an All-Star caliber player to trade for. They have several picks and talented players that other teams would starve for, but nothing has ensued.

Time will tell if the Knicks make another splash this summer, but The Athletic's Fred Katz believes that New York should go another route and address the end of its bench. NBA rosters allow for 14 guaranteed contracts by the start of the regular season and the Knicks are currently at 12 with Isaiah Roby, DaQuan Jeffries and Jacob Toppin among the non-guaranteed deals.

Katz listed Washington Wizards center Taj Gibson as a player the Knicks should sign for one of their final roster spots, since his return to Washington is uncertain. With that being said, the 38-year-old has played for Knicks coach Tom Thibodeau on several occasions, including two seasons in New York (2020-22).

"If Gibson were to come back to New York, where he previously played for three seasons, it would be less for basketball reasons and more for relationship ones," Katz said. "He’s one of Thibodeau’s most-loyal longtime liaisons: he has played for Thibodeau in all three of the coach’s stops (Chicago Bulls, Minnesota Timberwolves and Knicks). Maybe Thibodeau wants another well-respected translator in the locker room."

Katz explained that the Knicks "revered" Gibson when he played in New York and still has a great relationship with one of the centers.

"(Gibson] is one of (Mitchell) Robinson’s favorite all-time teammates," Katz said. "The 25-year-old center soaks up whatever advice Gibson has to provide."

In three total seasons with the Knicks, Gibson made 159 appearances (53 starts) and averaged 5.3 points and 4.7 rebounds. While an All-Star would obviously make more of an impact on the court, the mentorship and experience by Gibson would be very valuable off of the hardwood.

You can follow Hunter De Siver on Twitter @HunterDeSiver.

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