Dennis Rodman

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Dennis Rodman
Dennis Rodman.jpg
The Worm
Position: Power Forward
Height: 6'8"
Weight: 210
Nationality: American
Born: 5/13/1961
Birthplace: Trenton, NJ
Draft: 27th overall
Drafted By: Detroit
College: Southeastern Oklahoma State
NBA Career: 1986-2000
Mavs Tenure: 2000

Dennis Rodman (born May 13 1961, in Trenton, New Jersey) was signed by the Dallas Mavericks as a free agent on February 3, 2000.

Rodman, who grew up in Dallas, Texas, was far from a basketball prospect in high school. After a stint at North Central Texas College in Gainesville, Texas, he played for Southeastern Oklahoma State University, an National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics school (NAIA). There, Rodman was a three-time NAIA All-American and led the NAIA in rebounding in both the 1984-85 and 1985-86 seasons. He also averaged over 25 points per game for his three-year NAIA career.

After a strong NBA pre-draft workout, the Detroit Pistons took sufficient notice of Rodman to select him in the second round of the 1986 NBA Draft. At that time, the Pistons were an up-and-coming team led by Isiah Thomas at point guard, Joe Dumars at shooting guard, Adrian Dantley at small forward, and Bill Laimbeer at center. They had notable role players in Vinnie Johnson, John Salley, and Rick Mahorn. Rodman's intensity was a perfect fit for a team known for its rough style of play and tenacious defense. The Pistons were knocked out of the playoffs in 1987 by their nemesis Boston Celtics, although Rodman did a decent job of guarding their star player, Larry Bird.

In 1988, Rodman seemed to show even more star potential, crashing the boards more and defending better than before. In 1989, he was finally recognized for his work by being named Defensive Player of the Year, the first of his two consecutive DPOY awards. He finished second to Laimbeer in rebounding on the team, and Rodman helped the Pistons put away the young Chicago Bulls for the second straight year as they won their first NBA championship. The following year was almost identical, with the Pistons beating the Bulls in the Eastern Conference finals again, winning their second straight championship, and Rodman again winning Defensive Player of the Year honors.

Rodman led the Pistons with 12.5 rebounds per game in 1991. In 1992, Rodman improved significantly, averaging over eighteen per game as he won the first of seven straight rebounding titles. In a March 1992 game, he totaled a career high 34 total rebounds. Rodman's second best rebounding performance was in, in his last season with the Pistons. On October 1, 1993, Detroit dealt Rodman to the Spurs.

In San Antonio, Rodman continued his rebounding expertise and allowed center David Robinson to focus more on scoring; Robinson won the scoring title. It marked the first time that teammates won both the scoring and rebounding title, but it would not be the last for Rodman. The following season, Rodman helped San Antonio to their then-franchise best win-loss record of 62-20, and they made it to the Western Conference finals. However, his increasingly erratic off-court life, including a brief but heavily-publicized relationship with singer Madonna, and on-court antics, such as dying his hair, proved too much for the Spurs.

Prior the 1995-96 NBA season, Rodman was traded to the Chicago Bulls for center Will Perdue and cash considerations, in order to fill a large void at power forward left by Horace Grant, who left the Bulls prior to the 1994-95 NBA season. In his book "Bad As I Wanna Be," Rodman stated that Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen had to approve the trade before it took place. Rodman chose the number 91 (9+1=10 according to Rodman for why he chose that number) for his jersey since the number 10 jersey was retired by the Bulls after the 1994-1995 season in honor of Bob Love. The Bulls, with Rodman and Michael Jordan's return from retirement improved 25 games from the previous year's 47-35 record to an NBA record 72-10 regular season finish in the 1995-96 NBA season.

Later, in 1996 NBA Playoffs, the Bulls easily made their way to the NBA Finals and the NBA championship. Rodman, Jordan, and Scottie Pippen all made the All-Defensive First Team, the first time three players from the same team made it on the first team. Rodman led the league in rebounding for the fifth straight year, and Jordan won the scoring title, the second time that teammates had led the league in scoring and rebounding. They would repeat in 1997 and 1998 as the team three-peated for the second time in the decade. Rodman became a fan favorite for his behavior and also would take of his jersey off and toss it to a fan if he ever fouled out or was ejected from a game.

Rodman was known for his shocking behavior on the court, including insulting the Morman community after a game in Utah<ref>http://goinside.com/97/6/rodman.html</ref> during a game in New Jersey on March 16, 1996. On January 15, 1997, Rodman was involved in another notorious incident during a game against the Minnesota Timberwolves. After tripping over cameraman Eugene Amos, Rodman kicked Amos in the groin.<ref>http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9505EED7103BF932A15752C0A961958260&n=Top%2fReference%2fTimes%20Topics%2fPeople%2fR%2fRodman%2c%20Dennis</ref> (See Video) Though he was not assessed a technical foul at the time, Rodman ultimately paid Amos a $200,000 settlement, and the league suspended Rodman for 11 games. Despite his behavior, Rodman was for the most part kept under control by coach Phil Jackson and Jordan during his time in Chicago.

Rodman left Chicago after the 1997-98 NBA season as the Bulls started a massive rebuilding phase. He also finished his last major season, as he would only have brief stints with other NBA teams. Rodman was the premier rebounder of the 1990s with seven straight titles, and matched up defensively with players ranging from Michael Jordan, Scottie Pippen, Magic Johnson, and Larry Bird, to Shaquille O'Neal, Alonzo Mourning]], Shawn Kemp, Karl Malone, and Charles Barkley. His most impressive feat was during the 1996 Eastern Conference Finals against the Orlando Magic, when Rodman shut down the Horace Grant and helped contain O'Neal, key to the Bulls' eventual sweep of the defending Eastern Conference champs. He also was credited for being able to shut down Karl Malone during both finals series against the Utah Jazz and for breaking down center Frank Brickowski psychologically during the finals series against the Seattle Supersonics.

After his stint with the Bulls, Rodman became a journeyman. He briefly joined the Los Angeles Lakers and helped them to a 17-6 record while averaging 11.2 rebounds per game. However, Rodman had taken a leave of absence for personal reasons and was released soon after. The following season he would join the Dallas Mavericks for 12 games. Rodman averaged 14.3 rebounds per game for the Mavericks. However, the Mavericks still had little success and Rodman was released, after 34 days, due to some critical comments of Mavericks owner Mark Cuban. In his 12 games Rodman averaged 2.8 points and 14.3 rebounds.

During his career, Rodman was a two-time All-Star, led the NBA in rebounds-per-game a record seven consecutive years and made the league's All-Defensive First Team seven times.

Rodman is known for his controversial behavior and outlandish appearance and being notoriously prone to cursing in public or on live television during his playing career. He sported numerous tattoos and piercings, and frequently dyed his hair a bright, artificial color.

Rodman was also briefly married to Carmen Electra, and famously wore a wedding dress at a public appearance to promote his autobiography Bad as I Wanna Be. He has participated in several "reality" television including "The Celebrity Apprentice", "Celebrity Championship Wrestling" and "Celebrity Mole".

He also dated Madonna, and claims in his first autobiography that she actively tried to have a baby with him.