Dennis Rodman talked about how Gregg Popovich didn’t like him and traded him to the Bulls for Will Perdue in 1995.
Dennis Rodman wasn’t exactly the easiest person to have on your team. His extracurricular antics almost always irked at least a couple people on his team, whether it be David Robinson on the Spurs or Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen on the Chicago Bulls. However, his off-court practices were not indicative of his production on the court.
Despite leading the league in rebounding by a large margin in both 1994 and 1995 while also being named to an All-NBA team in the latter year, the Spurs didn’t gel with ‘The Worm’. This was no surprise as both David Robinson and Gregg Popovich had served the United States.
‘The Admiral’ didn’t get his nickname from his on-court dominance. He received it due to the fact that he served in the military as an engineer for two years and was a Navy reserve for another 6. Coach Pop on the other hand, served 5 years in the Air Force before turning his sights to basketball.
With men who understand order and discipline to such a high degree leading your team, it’s understandable as to why Dennis Rodman wasn’t the ideal candidate to be on the roster.
Dennis Rodman was pushed out of San Antonio by Gregg Popovich.
Dennis Rodman blasted the Spurs front office in a postgame presser following their WCF loss to the Rockets in 1995. This must’ve been the last straw for GM, Gregg Popovich, as he was soon traded to the Chicago Bulls for center, Will Perdue, a man who averaged less than 5 points a game.
In a book released in 1996 would have Rodman taking shots at Coach Pop, calling him ‘the biggest problem in San Antonio’. When talking about Pop during an interview with Kevin Hart, Dennis mentioned how he wasn’t wanted in San Antonio.
“In San Antonio, Gregg Popovich was the GM; he didn’t like me at all. I wasn’t the church-going guy. David Robinson called me ‘the devil’. Popovich wanted me to get out of there so bad that he traded me to Chicago for Will Perdue. ‘Here’s your sh*t, get the f**k out’” [at the 4:30 minute mark]
Of course, following their falling out, the two would go on to have the most successful portions of their careers. Popovich won 5 championships over the course of 3 decades as Spurs HC while Dennis Rodman won three straight titles with the Bulls from ‘96-98.