"I f**k up the NBA image, their whole business enterprise" - Dennis Rodman's eccentric persona was on full display in 1997 interview

Dennis Rodman Unveils New Peta Ad
Dennis Rodman Unveils New Peta Ad

Dennis Rodman is one of the most eccentric, bizarre and interesting personalities in NBA history. Rodman was at the height of his antics in the 1990s as a member of the Chicago Bulls. He even thought that he screwed up the league's image at the time.

In an interview with Playboy in 1997, Rodman discussed a handful of topics like his basketball career, sex life and controversies he has been involved in. One of the questions asked by Kevin Cook was if the NBA didn't like him due to his odd behavior.

"I f**k up the NBA image, their whole business enterprise," Rodman said. "Because I can express myself as an individual. In their high-society sport, I bring it from the heart."

Dennis Rodman wasn't as eccentric and controversial when he joined the NBA in 1986. He was an energetic defensive player of the Detroit Pistons, helping the "Bad Boys" win two NBA Finals in 1989 and 1990. He even won the Defensive Player of the Year award in 1990 and 1991.

However, the Hall of Famer was at a career crossroads when he was traded to the San Antonio Spurs in 1993. After an aborted suicide attempt that year, Rodman's new persona emerged. He started dyeing his hair in colorful hues and getting a lot of piercings and tattoos.

Rodman remained one of the best rebounders, but "The Worm" also started annoying opposing players and coaches with his antics. He had a fallout with the Spurs, which led to his trade to the Chicago Bulls.

It was a rousing success for the Bulls and Rodman, winning championships from 1996 to 1998. His personality also became more bizarre in Chicago, including wearing a wedding dress to promote his autobiography in 1996. He also had a high-profile relationship with Madonna as well as getting married to Carmen Electra.

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Dennis Rodman was not afraid of lifetime ban threat from the NBA

Dennis Rodman at the 2022 NBA All-Star Game
Dennis Rodman at the 2022 NBA All-Star Game

Due to his various antics on and off the court, there were rumors that the NBA threatened Dennis Rodman with a lifetime ban. However, Rodman was not afraid of a that, as he believed that the league needed him.

"The NBA won't say goodbye to me," Rodman told Playboy. "They need me. The NBA is a cripple, and I am the crutch. They tell me to act like a typical athlete, but they are playing both sides of the fence. I get attention. They profit off me."

Rodman even went off on then-NBA commissioner David Stern with a ridiculous claim:

"I don't give a damn what David Stern thinks. He's not my f**king father. I don't care what Stern thinks, but I'll tell you what he thinks. He thinks I'm good for the league. David Stern is a closet Dennis Rodman fan."

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Edited by Juan Paolo David
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