“I wasn’t doing coc*ine, I only got into alcohol”: When Dennis Rodman revealed how he beat his temptations to become a star alongside Michael Jordan on the Bulls

Ashish Priyadarshi
|Published May 28, 2022

Dennis Rodman is probably one of the most eccentric NBA players to ever play the game, but he was a major piece of the Michael Jordan led Bulls teams that won it all.

Rodman was brought over on Jordan’s request. He used to be a member of the Detroit Pistons and San Antonio Spurs before he joined the Bulls, and he gained a reputation for being one of the best defensive players in the league.

In fact, Rodman was part of the ‘Bad Boy Pistons’ teams that Jordan used to match up against. The Pistons and Bulls had formed quite the rivalry back then.

The Pistons were notorious for playing a rough style of basketball and invented the ‘Jordan rules’ to slow down the Bulls legend. This would involve fouling him hard, holding him, bumping him, and a lot more to make him physically uncomfortable. Rodman was a major part of that.

However, when the time came, Rodman proved his worth to the Bulls and won three rings with them.

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Also Read: “Dennis Rodman would be all over Larry Bird, but he’d talk as if he was open!”: When the Worm recalled how he tried extra hard to defend the Celtics legend amidst trash talks

Dennis Rodman once revealed how he had to balance drugs and basketball

Rodman’s rebounding and aggressive defense made him a vital member of the Bulls squads. From 1995 to 1998, Rodman averaged 15.4 rebounds per game, leading the league in the stat every year.

Jordan realized that the Bulls needed someone like Rodman to keep up defensively with the more dominant bigs in their second three-peat run, and that’s why he vouched for him.

However, Rodman’s personality occasionally made things difficult for his team. For example, Rodman once took a 48 hour vacation to go and party and have some personal time, asking for permission from head coach Phil Jackson as well. When he was late, Jordan himself personally went to call Rodman back.

Like many other players and people at the time (and even now to be fair), Rodman was tempted by drugs, and he knew that he had to keep a fine balance between his temptations and his basketball career and life.

He admitted that he got into alcohol, but he never dared to venture beyond that and get into things like coc*ine or harder substances.

When you’re a person at Rodman’s level, it can be easy to get into these things given how acaccessible they are, but understanding that your body comes first takes a lot of self awareness. Rodman clearly understood though.

Also Read: “It was Michael Jordan, not Mark Cuban, who inspired LeBron James to break out the cigars”: Lakers’ star adopted various things from Bulls’ GOAT’s lifestyle

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About the author

Ashish Priyadarshi

Ashish Priyadarshi

Ashish Priyadarshi is The SportsRush's content manager and editor. Ashish freelanced for 1 year in the NFL division before taking on an editorial role in the company. He then tacked on managing content while adding on a writing role in the NBA division. Ashish has been closely following the NFL and NBA since the 2012 season when the Patriots lost the Super Bowl and Derrick Rose was at the height of his powers. Since then, Ashish has focused on honing his knowledge for both leagues in, even writing crossover pieces. In his free time, Ashish is an avid basketball player, he loves to watch movies and TV shows, immersing himself in the cinematic world. Ashish studies computer science and data science at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and would love to mesh his love for sports with his technical skills.

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