Dennis Rodman once drew the ire of Michael WIlbon by taking off his shoes at halftime of a basketball game. The occasion was the 1988 NBA All-Star Game in Seattle, when Rodman was a member of the Detroit Pistons. Rodman, then a second-year player, was one of the most notorious practical jokers in the league. He would often tweak the basketball establishment, for example by wearing sneakers on the court rather than shoes.

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For a long time, Dennis Rodman’s image was synonymous with not only the craziness of the NBA but also controversial behavior, like the infamous flag-waving incident with the North Korean leader Kim Jong-Il. But lesser-known is that Rodman was once a “yes sir” in the locker room, according to Golden State Warriors forward Michael WIlbon. It was Rodman who gave WIlbon his nickname, “The Kid,” and was the team’s go-to guy for quotes. During a game in 1994, the Detroit Pistons were up 122-114, with only 50 seconds remaining. WIlbon recalls Rodman telling him to sit on the bench with a magazine,

Whether you’re a die-hard basketball fan or have never seen a game, you’ve probably heard of Dennis Rodman. While the forward was a talented player, he also had a propensity for grabbing the attention of the media. There could never be a dull moment while The Worm was there.

Take, for example, a November 1994 column by Mike Wilbon in the Washington Post. Rodman sat down on the bench, removed his shoes, and began reading a magazine, according to the scribe’s testimony.

Dennis Rodman was no stranger to generating headlines for his antics.

Rodman was a great rebounder and a brave defender in the NBA during his time there. But, for better or worse, his on-court prowess wasn’t necessarily what made the news.

The forward resolved to embrace individualism and be unapologetically himself after contemplating death during his tenure with the Detroit Pistons. That showed itself in a number of visual manifestations, from vibrant haircuts to a well-known bridal gown. Rodman’s decisions, on the other hand, were not all fun and games.

Rodman, for example, got into trouble after kicking a cameraman on one occasion. He was fined and suspended for 11 games, as expected, and he also agreed to pay a $200,000 settlement to put the issue behind him. The Worm was also fined for making a derogatory remark towards Mormons and accruing a number of technical fouls throughout the years.

Rodman continued to make headlines even after he retired. In addition to his numerous appearances on reality television, he formed an odd acquaintance with Kim Jong-un and even traveled to North Korea.

With his unusual behavior, the Worm once drew Michael Wilbon’s attention.

Dennis Rodman sits behind his San Antonio Spurs teammates.

Dennis Rodman sits behind his San Antonio Spurs teammates. During his tenure with the San Antonio Spurs, Dennis Rodman sat on the bench. | Vince Bucci/AFP via Getty Images

Slacking off on the bench during a game barely registers on the radar in the grand scope of Dennis Rodman’s antics. In 1994, however, Michael Wilbon wrote a lengthy piece about that exact behavior.

In the Washington Post, the current ESPN personality stated, “It was one of those spectacles that makes you do a double-take.” “Dennis Rodman was seated on the Detroit Pistons bench at USAir Arena, the visitors’ bench. He was quiet and calm. In fact, he’s a little too calm. Rodman, you saw, had removed his footwear. His socks had been dragged down. His legs were crossed in front of him. A towel was on his lap, and he had something that looked like a cape draped around him. There had to be paying customers between him and the rest of the Pistons because he was so far down the end of the bench. Rodman appeared disconnected, as if he were waiting for the cabin steward to serve a gin and juice on the lido deck of a cruise ship.”

Wilbon wasn’t finished yet, despite the fact that it sounded like a great scene. The most remarkable detail, in his mind, was still to come.

That wasn’t even the worst of it. Dennis Rodman was reading a magazine, as God is my witness. During the game, of course! As though he were at B. Dalton’s.

Michael Wilbon of the Washington Post contributes to this article.

While it’s unclear when this incident occurred — the piece is dated November 3, 1994, but Rodman had already joined the Spurs and didn’t visit Washington until December of that year — Wilbon was definitely taken aback by the sight of The Worm reading on the bench. He went on to say that it happened in the third quarter, not trash time.

Dennis Rodman, on the other hand, had a really good run towards the end.

Wilbon also took a shot at Rodman near the end of his essay, as if his prior words weren’t enough. “I no longer despise Rodman; I feel sorry for him, like I do with most individuals who require assistance,” the scribe added. “At the age of 33, he’s running out of options. In a transaction, he’s no longer worth anything. No serious contender will risk contaminating the locker room by bringing him in.”

Of course, a contender did take a chance on Rodman. Wilbon’s hometown Chicago Bulls signed him before of the 1995-96 season, in an ironic twist. While there were some setbacks along the way, the forward’s decision paid off, as he assisted Michael Jordan in bringing three more championships to Chicago.

Was Dennis Rodman the ideal basketball player? Is it true that The Worm had some character flaws and made some questionable decisions? It is up to each individual to make their own decision. However, when it comes to his basketball resume, the forward is in good shape, flaws and all.

How to get help: Call the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s helpline at 1-800-662-4357 in the United States.

Dennis Rodman’s ‘Very Unique’ Pregame Routine Included Sitting Naked in His Locker and Special Permission from Phil Jackson

This article broadly covered the following related topics:

  • michael wilbon
  • where is dennis rodman now
  • rodman
  • dennis rodman’s net worth
  • matthew raymond wilbon
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