Taj Gibson starts vs. Lakers

LOS ANGELES -- Chicago Bulls forward Taj Gibson started against the Los Angeles Lakers on Tuesday night, despite missing practice Monday with a pinched nerve in his right foot.

Gibson underwent an MRI after practice Monday afternoon.

"I'm just happy that there wasn't really tears or anything," he said. "[The doctors were] looking at the film, and [their expression was] kind of shaky faces. Their faces were all screwed up, but I'm just happy it wasn't any tears. It's a little aggravation they said, but it will go away."

Coach Tom Thibodeau said Gibson's status was a game-time decision.

"He said he's feeling a lot better today, so it's encouraging," Thibodeau said. "We didn't think it was anything major, but we were precautionary [Monday], going to the doctor. [We'll] see how he feels tonight before the game, and if he's ready to go he goes."

Gibson had 17 points and 18 rebounds in a win over the Dallas Mavericks on Friday, and he's averaging 12.1 points and 7.3 rebounds.

"When the game time comes, everything just changes," Gibson said. "I'm looking forward to trying to play. I think I should be able to.

"I'm feeling a lot better."

Nick Friedell covers the Bulls for ESPNChicago.com.