One more day, and Taj Gibson knows the early morning wake-up knocks will end.
Wednesday is the deadline for the Bulls and Gibson to agree on a contract extension. If the two sides can't work something out by 11 p.m., Gibson will become a restricted free agent next summer.
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"I don't even think about it, to tell you the truth," Gibson said Tuesday at the United Center. "I turn my phone off, I go home and focus on the games ahead. It's going to be a big year."
If his phone is off, Gibson was asked how he gets updates from his agent, Mark Bartelstein. It turns out, both reside in the Northern suburbs, which makes communication easy.
"My agent just pops up at my house at like 6 in the morning with McDonald's," Gibson said. "He just rings the doorbell. My dogs are up barking at him. He comes in, 'Where's Taj?' He comes in the room, 'Wake up, wake up.'
"I'm like, 'Mark, I don't want to talk about it today.' Every other day I'm telling him I don't want to talk about it. If it's not done, don't call me about it. But he's been great and Gar (Forman) has been great and we're trying to get this thing done."
Gibson has said repeatedly that he wants to stay with the Bulls. The market price would seem to be around $8 million per season, but there's no telling what sort of offer he might get as a free agent.
If he's not signed, the Bulls would have the ability to match any offer Gibson receives next summer. His situation is different from Omer Asik because the Bulls have Bird rights with Gibson, which means they can exceed the salary cap to re-sign him.
Because Asik had just two years in the league, he was considered an early Bird free agent. Offers from other teams were limited to $5 million in the first two seasons. Houston added a third year for Asik at roughly $15 million and the Bulls passed. The same offer to Gibson would not be allowed to have a huge third-year increase.
"Hopefully they'll get something done so I can just focus on basketball," Gibson added. "But it's a blessing to be in this position. How many people can say they have a chance to get an extension from a great team like the Chicago Bulls? I'm just taking it in stride. It's not fun at times."