Hall of Famer Dennis Rodman once kicked a cameraman in the groin, for which he had to endure a heavy punishment, especially financially.
It’s no secret that Dennis Rodman was not the quintessential NBA superstar. The defensive savant is probably one of the most controversial players to date. Rodman was equally known for his antics both off and on the court. The Worm faced numerous fines and suspensions during his career.
One of the most controversial incidents of his career came during the 1996-97 season. At the time, Rodman played alongside Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen on the Bulls. During a game against the Minnesota Timberwolves, Rodman was captured kicking a cameraman in the groin.
The play involved Rodman trying to grab the rebound from Kevin Garnett but would lose balance and stumble out of bounds. What followed was Rodman trying to recollect himself while a cameraman named Eugene Amos penned the camera towards Worm, who would kick the cameraman in the groin area.
25 years ago today, Dennis Rodman’s infamous kick to a cameraman’s groin.
Worm paid the cameraman $200K, was fined $25K by the NBA & lost about a million dollars in salary due to an 11-GM suspension
— Ballislife.com (@Ballislife) January 15, 2022
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Amos filed assault charges against Rodman, but the matter was settled outside the court, with the Bulls forward agreeing to pay $200K. However, this was not the end of Rodman’s penalties.
Dennis Rodman’s infamous kick controversy
Though Rodman settled the matter with Amos outside the court, the NBA levied the two-time DPOY with a 25K fine and an 11-game suspension. Reportedly, it was the second-longest punishment in league history and cost Rodman more than $1.1 million.
When asked Bulls head coach Phil Jackson about the entire incident, he said the following.
“I don’t know what happened there, but it looked like he kicked the guy in the knee, and the guy suddenly got falsetto.”
According to the Chicago Tribune, Rodman had the following explanation regarding the incident.
“He had his camera right there,” Rodman said. The camera people are too damned close on the baseline. All of a sudden, ‘Boom’ I step on his camera. Any athlete would react the same way. That’s your career. I stepped on (a camera) and I twisted my ankle. I don’t care who he is, he doesn’t need to be that close.”
“I said, ‘Sorry I kicked you,’ and then all of a sudden he said, ‘Get away from me,'” Rodman recalled. “Then all of a sudden he passed out. I was like, ‘Yeah, right.'”
Though Rodman may have hurt his ankle during the play, his hitting the cameraman in the groin, came across as very unsportsmanlike.