Cover Image for How Dennis Rodman molded his game, from a 8.1 ppg scorer to rebounder, for Michael Jordan’s Bulls

How Dennis Rodman molded his game, from a 8.1 ppg scorer to rebounder, for Michael Jordan’s Bulls

Hemanth Amar
|Tue Aug 16 2022

Dennis Rodman’s legendary career was built on his defensive and rebounding abilities, but the eccentric NBA player could also score.

The Chicago Bulls’ second three-peat is largely attributed to Michael Jordan, but it would not have happened without Dennis Rodman.

Rodman is arguably basketball’s greatest rebounder and hustler and is a two-time Defensive Player of the Year and a five-time champion.

Even after switching teams, he led the league in rebounding for seven consecutive years. Rodman was a major force in the paint in the 1990s, outrebounding certain 7-foot centers despite his 6-foot-7 stature.

Dennis Rodman, who was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame in 2011, is regarded as a basketball savant whose stories are still told today. He has nearly twice as many career rebounds as points. He is the ideal model for any player who gives his all on the court and has an impact on a championship team without scoring any points.

But was Rodman really not a great scorer?

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Dennis Rodman was an all-around basketball player and was a genuine scorer as well

Rodman is the most dominant rebounder of his generation. He is also one of the game’s most formidable defensive forces. Rodman, at 6’6″ and 220 pounds, had Michael Jordan’s body but Bill Russell’s rebounding skills. It’s incredible to think of someone his size averaging 18.7 rebounds per game over the course of a season.

Not to mention previous seasons in which he averaged 18.3, 17.3, 16.8, and 16.1 rebounds! Rodman averaged double figures in rebounding in every season he played more than 26 minutes per game.

The only criticism leveled at Rodman’s game is that he was not a great scorer.


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He was never a shooter and never averaged more than 11.6 points per game. Throughout his illustrious career, he averaged only about 12 points per 48 minutes. On average, he shot the ball about five times per game. When he did shoot, he made 52 percent of his shots go through the hoop.

Rodman averaged 11.6 points per game on 56% shooting in his second season in the league before averaging more than 10 rebounds per game. He averaged 25 points per game in college. Many people like to use Rodman as an example for kids to show them that they can “rebound or role” their way to the top.

Consider that Bill Russell averaged about 15 points per game and is regarded as a consensus top-10 player of all time by NBA experts.

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