The Bulls have expended too much time and energy developing TT as the PF of the future to throw it out the window now. TT deserves to start, and it would be a huge mistake by VDN to bring him off the bench.
If you don't buy the obvious argument (that is: TT is the best power-forward on the Bulls roster!), then I have another reason to start TT:
Isn't the idea to maximize what we can get from our best player, Derrick Rose? We are already changing the starting lineup enough (Salmons moves to SG, Deng in at SF, BG out) without benching TT. Shouldn't we be trying to create some consistency? Don;t we want a team taht can grow and learn together? A process D-Rose started with TT last year and can continue moving forward. MNo reason to throw another wrinkle at our young superstar.
There is an argument for why Taj should start -
Will Taj start over Tyrus this year? If the Bulls start Joakim Noah, then I don't think it's a bad decision. I think the Bulls should start him in a Chris Duhonesque way where he's the first one out of the starting lineup, but limiting the minutes where Noah and Tyrus are on the floor together is a good thing.
A rotation where Gibson plays for six minutes, then Tyrus comes in, and Noah plays for 8-9 then Brad comes in would work a lot better for separating the two than playing them both to start the game and third quarter. In that scenario, you're probably sticking with both for at least six minutes which gives them a minimum of 12 together on the floor.
The rebuttal from BlogaBull -
Firstly, I never thought I'd see Scott Skiles' self-sabotage as a positive example of strategy...
But I do get why one would (again, for purposes of winning games this season and being completely blind to the franchise tailspin) want to limit the Thomas+Noah lineups. All the best lineups last season included Brad Miller, and you can see how Noah and Thomas duplicate eachother in skillset a bit too much.
But to make sure Taj Gibson started and got at least 12 minutes a game? Thonus doesn't really expound on why Taj starting is a better idea...
It is preseason, and maybe this won't matter -
Based on the pregame lineups, Taj Gibson will continue to start at power forward tonight against Orlando. That’s a little surprising, since Tyrus Thomas came off a hip injury to produce 22 points and 13 rebounds last Friday against Minnesota.
Was Thomas surprised he’s not starting?
“A little bit, but he’s the guy who makes decisions,” Thomas said before the game, referring to coach Vinny Del Negro.
“I don’t even think it should be questionable, from what I’ve contributed to the team last season and what I did throughout camp. But like I said, he’s the guy making the decisions. Whatever decision he makes, I still have to go out and play.”
Del Negro came out a few minutes later for his pregame news conference and made it sound as though Thomas will be starting on opening night against the Spurs.