Worst losses don't happen on court

April, 29, 2011
4/29/11
8:17
PM CT
Isaacson By Melissa Isaacson
ESPNChicago.com
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They talk about Taj Gibson's energy, about the intensity he brings and the support he gives the Chicago Bulls as one of their key contributors off the bench.

But few know of the nights this season when he couldn't sleep but had trouble dragging himself out of bed; when he felt confused and even useless in practice; when he needed the Bulls' help as much as they needed him.

When he couldn't even bear to answer his phone.

"I told the team if they wanted to get in contact with me, I'd have one of the trainers come get me or when we were on the road, call me on the hotel phone," Gibson said Friday. "I didn't really want to talk to anybody. It seemed like it was always something negative: 'He didn't make it. He didn't survive.' Bad stuff. And I didn't want to hear it."

Read the entire column.

Melissa Isaacson

Columnist, ESPNChicago.com
Melissa Isaacson is a columnist for espnW.com, ESPN Chicago and ESPN.com. The award-winning writer has covered Chicago sports for most of her 31-year career, including at the Chicago Tribune before joining ESPN in 2009. Isaacson has also covered tennis since 1986.

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TEAM LEADERS

POINTS
Jimmy Butler
PTS AST STL MIN
21.6 3.4 1.5 40.1
OTHER LEADERS
ReboundsP. Gasol 11.5
AssistsD. Rose 5.0
StealsJ. Butler 1.5
BlocksP. Gasol 2.0