Taj Gibson 20 Points/6 Assists Full Highlights (11/17/2014)

Taj Gibson awoke slowly, lacking the energy to even open his eyes. There was a vague pressure on top of him, a pressure which explained why he had just woken up from a dream about being ponderously flattened between two slabs of concrete. A dim dawn-light made the inside of his eyelids a soothing medium-gray color as he grabbed at the last wisps of the dream vanishing from his mind.

It abruptly occurred to Taj that he had been single for several months now; there should be no girlfriend on top of him playing a silly little game. Not only that, he was flat on his back with his hands somehow restrained, a much different sleeping position than his usual pillow-cradling technique. With evidence mounting that something was not right with this situation, he opened his eyes to find a pair of eyes staring right back.

“Hi Taj. How’s it going?”

Taj recognized that voice. “Carlos, what are you doing in my bed?” he asked, the levelness in his voice only possible because of his knowledge of Carlos’ regular antics. “And why do you have my wrists pinned down?”

Carlos made no move to get off his former teammate. “Oh, I was just in the area and I thought I would pay my good friend Taj a visit.”

“But you’re in Los Angeles now. You wouldn’t be ‘just in the area’. Something’s not adding up here,” Taj responded, the gears of his brain grinding reluctantly.

Out of Carlos’ eyes fell a single, errant tear that splashed Taj right on the tip of his nose. “I miss you guys so much. There’s some cool guys down in Cali, but man, we had something special here in Chicago.”

Sighing, Taj replied, “Yeah, I know it’s hard to integrate into a new system, but I still don’t get why you’re straddling my stomach with your ass. It actually sorta hurts.”

“You want the truth, Taj? You sure you want it?” Carlos asked, his normally goofy voice suddenly, unnervingly serious. When Taj nodded, Carlos continued, “All the years I was with Chicago, I was the starter, and you were the backup. I was the veteran, you were the young’un. I got the minutes, you didn’t get the minutes. Even when you showed the ability to stretch the floor with your jumper, defend multiple positions, and make explosive plays at the basket, I was ahead of you, not in skill but in perceived skill. While I remained in Chicago, your talent would never be allowed to shine through the dense fog of my incompetence.”

Taj could almost feel his intestines liquefying. “Everything you said is correct, but it doesn’t really answer my question,” he gasped.

“Don’t you see, Taj? I was holding you down in Chicago, and I missed it so much, I’m back to do it again.” Carlos tightened his grip on Taj’s wrists in emphasis. “And this time, I’m not letting go.”

Taj rolled his eyes. It was going to be a long morning.

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