What Happened to Boobie Gibson?

Boobie Gibson seemed to be coming around as a player early on this NBA season.  He was shooting incredibly well.  He was playing solid defense, which we all know is the only real way to guarantee yourself minutes on a Mike Brown-coached basketball team.  Then, all of a sudden, Boobie Gibson seemed to just disappear from the Cavs’ rotation.  And even stranger, he appears to have disappeared at a time when we all thought the Cavs would need him most, after Jamario Moon got hurt.

On January 5th when talking about the Moon injury to the ABJ’s George M. Thomas, Mike Brown even indicated that Boobie Gibson would be in the gameplan for minutes after Moon got injured with the abdominal strain.  Since that time, Gibson has played a total of 18 minutes over the course of six games, including 3 Did Not Play Coach’s Decisions in the box scores.

All those minutes that Gibson were supposed to get seem to have gone to Jawad Williams, who had hardly played at all up until the last week or so.  Since that comment that Mike Brown made in the January 5th column, Williams has played 109 minutes over the same 6 games that Gibson has played 18 minutes.  The results have been mostly good for Jawad Williams, so I don’t really have an issue with him playing.  But is Mike Brown’s rotation so set and rigid that minutes for one player are mutually exclusive?

One of the biggest complaints about Mike Brown over the years has been his rigid player rotations and slowness to react to changing those rotations.  Brown is also known for inexplicably causing certain players to disappear for long stretches, inexplicably at some points.  Combine that with his oddly-timed benching of Zydrunas Ilgauskas this year, and it makes you wonder.  Did he just forget about Boobie?  Did Boobie start to practice badly?  Is Boobie the “short” option and competing for minutes with only Mo Williams and Delonte West?  Is Jawad Williams getting to play in Jamario Moon’s stead because he more closely matches Moon in body type?

I haven’t read anything about Gibson yet regarding his absence.  It just seems kind of strange for him to disappear in the month of January after shooting 55% from three in the month of December while shooting 58.5% overall from the field.  Just makes me wonder.  For the first bit I thought they might just be auditioning Jawad Williams for the trade market.  But now that the rumors almost equally include Daniel Gibson, it would seem strange to have an eye on the trade market while sitting one of the more attractive trade pieces on the team.  I am sure we will never find out exactly what happened.  I sure would like to know, though.

  • http://waitingfornextyear.com DP

    Maybe Brown agrees that Derek Anderson gives his team the best chance to win.

  • humboldt

    Thanks for posing the question Craig. Vexing to say the least. I know our perspective is limited as fans since we only see a small sample of what occurs week to week (in other words, none of us watch practice to see the nuances), but still, hard to decipher what Mike Brown is thinking since after 4 yrs we all know what Boobie gives the team.

    I liked what Windhorst wrote the other day, saying they’ll need Boobie again at some point. I guess the cyclical nature of rotations is what it is under Brown, but you worry about the psychology of his (seemingly) willy-nilly decisions in the long-term.

  • J-Dub

    I’d have a tough time focusing on ball if I came home to this every night…


  • Swig

    @humboldt, agreed. If gibson is going to continue his career here, the psychology angle makes it the most confusing of all. Gibson finally started to look like he knew he fit and knew he belonged. Pulling the rug out from under him could be a big set back if we need to rely on him in the future.

  • natty The Dog

    I felt like when Gibson was on the floor at one point running the second unit, he was full of confidence. I could see it in his play that it was HIM who hit those 5 threes against detroit, HIM who has played alongside Lebron for several years, and he took that and put it into his game. He didn’t defer the ball to anyone on the floor, had that, this is my team attitude and went to the hole strong. I never saw that in him before, and he had it…..I hope it hasn’t been lost with this stretch of bench warming.

  • S-Dub

    Although he isn’t playing, he doesn’t seem to have a bad attitude. When he does come in he performs well. We don’t know his side to things. Obviously, he wants to play but he could be on board with this. If Shaq isn’t complaining then does Boobie really have room to? The team knew this season was going to be about sacrifices, and if anyone knows what “The Secret” is then they just might be looking at a team that has “The Secret” and that is great for us fans.

  • Christopher

    I would be looking at this as a little more of a Jawad Williams showcase versus Boobie benched. Boobie coming back from injury strong this year indicates his poor play was due to his injury not his lack of skills.

    That being said, Brown and Ferry like what they see and have him in the future plans not the trading block.

    With their minds being made up there, turn attention to Jawad whom they need to find out if he is NBA talent immediately in this short trade season.

    I wouldn’t be surprised to see Jawad as a package of whatever deal Ferry puts together and Boobie back in the rotation soon.

  • Joseph


    Or they flipped a coin and Williams won!

  • S-Dub

    Also, I think Windy was indicating that we are going to need big mins from Boobie when the whole Delonte fall out happens. He has probably been told that, that’s when he’ll get his.

  • Jason

    I think it’s more how Jawad Williams functions as a replacement for Moon in the current rotation. In other words, there was more interchangeability between Jawad/Jamario than Jamario/Boobie; particularly in terms of defense.

    Gibson, paired in the 2nd unit w/Delonte, makes for a pretty small backcourt; which I think it what the coaches are trying to avoid. It’s a shame b/c Boobie was playing pretty well and I think it came down to what each guy could give you, not a matter of anyone being in the proverbial doghouse.

  • Illmatic8

    I suspect that both Gibson and Z will be traded at some point before the deadline. I’m not sure that its a coincidence that both of these players had bizarre DNP coach’s decision situations.

  • Jack

    If the Cavs don’t make a change, I will be sad.

  • http://www.60bpm.com Robbie

    @S-Dub — My first hunch/guess/idea is maybe because of Gibson’s injury issues over the past couple of seasons they’re keeping him fresh in case something happens with Delonte.

    I don’t know. To be honest, I’ve almost forgotten about the Cavaliers since they went on the road trip. I drink too much to stay up until 1 AM watching regular season basketball games!!!

  • Tsunami

    “One of the biggest complaints about Mike Brown over the years has been his rigid player rotations and slowness to react to changing those rotations. Brown is also known for inexplicably causing certain players to disappear for long stretches, inexplicably at some points.” Exactly! For 2 straight years, Damon Jones rode the pine. He didn’t even get into garbage time. I was so furious, because I KNEW that in the playoffs, the Cavs were going to need to go small and have someone that could hit a spot up 3 when the defense collapsed on LeBron. So, after sitting for 4 months, Coach Brown brings in Damon Jones in a must-win games against the Pistons. Before Jones was traded in 2008, the same thing was happening. MADDENING! Boobie Gibson is a gamer. They do not put him in a position to succeed. They should NEVER use him as a point guard. He can’t set up the offense AT ALL. But he is probably the best spot up 3 point shooter in the entire NBA, and that is invaluable. And as you said, he’s not a bad defender. This year I’ve even noticed he’s not afraid to get up for a rebound. He’s look the best I’ve ever seen this year, and he’s riding the pine.

    Mike Brown is a good coach, but he sure does some dumb things. This is one of them.

  • DB216

    It the same old, same old. This I why I can’t stand Mike Brown as the coach
    of this team. Not only an he not run an offense or control what’s going on on
    floor when LeBron is out there. He ca

  • DB216

    It the same old, same old. This I why I can’t stand Mike Brown as the coach
    of this team. Not only an he not run an offense or control what’s going on on
    floor when LeBron is out there. He cant manage his rotation.

    The Cavs will not win a championship on his watch.

  • randallhank

    Boobie was never playing solid defense — he is overmatched by just about everyone he guards, and he cannot take pressure off of Lebron or Mo Williams. He is completely one dimensional on offense and if the Cavs could get rid of his contract right now, they surely would. Jawad Williams may indeed end up being part of a trade. But, assuming West will not miss playing time, I would think the Cavs would much rather move Gibson. Jawad Williams is giving them very good value and has a higher ceiling than Boobie. Gibson’s ceiling is pretty clear, and since he has never even posted average NBA PER, I think it’s fair to say that it’s not particularly high. I admire Boobie’s grit and his outside stroke is nice, but at $4 – $5 million per year for 4 years, we will be lucky if another team will take him.

  • Coach G

    Coach Brown must have heard one of his mentor coaches talk about how when playoffs come along you reduce the number of players you use in your rotations. That would have been, oh, a decade and a half ago. After that time clubs would just load up with wily veteran role players who could just come in at the right time and assassinate the tiring starters trying to finish a brutal last 4 minutes of a very even playoff or championship game.

    But what Coach Brown seems to always do is take the shooters with the purest stroke, and maybe some defensive weaknesses that can really be covered reasonably well with other standout defenders throughout the lineup, and just un-develop them until they – in his opinion can’t do anything right.

    Ever since the Atlanta away and home games the Cavs have looked tired and beat up. Not surprising with the brutal schedule of most games played in the NBA, most away games in the NBA, probably the most back to back games played in the NBA, and probably most wins against teams over .500 record. Down this last stretch, Mo looked tired, LeBron looked tired and somewhat beat up, Shaq looked like he was sucking wind trying to run hard in high altitude Denver and Utah. Anthony Parker looked a little light in the britches to guard some of the fierce shooting guards he had to chase like a mad dog in a meat house, so he was clanking some big shots as was Mo Notti, (sorry Mo, you are awesome but looked a wee bit gassed a couple games), Jawad played awesome, Delonte had some spectacular runs and clinked some big shots…Anderson, played off the charts insane wicked good like he had oxygen tanks hidden under his big hair!!!

    What am I missing here? We had to play just too dadgum hard to scratch out wins, or lose by one or two points for lack of a couple of huge Boobie Gibson shots. You, and I, and gazillions of Cavs watchers saw, he as grown a bit, is stronger, is healthy, plays hard both ways, gets up for big rebounds, and in quite a few games put the dagger in other teams with 2 or 3 nuthin but nets from deep in the pick your own arena. He did this often between the 5 minute mark and the 1.5 minute mark so the Cavs could just kill the clock instead of playing out extended games like v Denver and Utah where we flat out shouldn’t have had that much trouble.

    So, wuz up, Coach Brown? What you got against pure shooters? Play Boobie more – pretend it is your own idea!

  • http://www.msblsim.com boogeyman

    Oh man my favorite subject from the days on CavsFanatics.com finally people are seeing how completely overrated and what a waste of a contract Daniel Boobie Gibson was and is! The guy got a contract based off one playoff series verse Detroit and basically used a “supposed” toe injury to cover for his God awful season last year. Well he’s healthy now, no, and he still stinks? I’m glad he has the time though to chase around Keisha Cole and to continue to get those stupid designs carved into his hair. I’m afraid Boobie is just that, a big Boobie! I have hoped for the past three years the Cavaliers would rid themselves of this one dimensional stand still three point shooter who can’t even make half of his attempts. I mean how can an NBA guard not even be able to dribble? Good riddans Boobie!

  • Ike


    I almost fell off my chair to that one. Hilarious.

  • Ron

    Gibson would be good on another team with a better coach. The Cavs won’t win a championship with coach Brown. Which means James will leave Cleveland after the post season.