Charles Barkley admits to landing the first blow on Dennis Rodman during games so as to stop him from irritating him the rest of the way.
Dennis Rodman was undoubtedly one of the most irritating players to play against. He would grab 20 rebounds on the regular, muscling it out with guys who are 5 inches taller than him and would defend on the perimeter and in the paint like his life depended on it. To top it all off, he would do everything from take charges to dive for loose balls.
Every team needs a guy who puts it all on the line for the sake of the squad’s success and Dennis Rodman was the epitome of such a player. It’s quite telling of how important Rodman was to Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls when you consider the fact that he was on those Detroit Pistons teams that beat up on them year in and year out.
Going up against ‘The Worm’ in any facet of the game meant you were in for a long night, both mentally and physically. Charles Barkley understood this and figured out a way to deal with him.
Charles Barkley used to hit Dennis Rodman as hard as he could during the first few minutes of a game.
During an edition of Open Court, Shaq, Steve Kerr, Ernie Johnson, and the rest were chopping it up over how good of a player Dennis Rodman was. Shaq talked about his short stint with the Lakers and how they would let Rodman come late to games because they knew he was a sure shot to be productive.
Charles Barkley would then enter the conversation and reveal the tactic he used to deal with a pesky player such as Dennis Rodman.
“I’d just punch him as hard as I could at the beginning of the game and he would leave you alone. Michael used to ask us, ‘Why do you keep doing that?’ Because he stops irritating you and bugging you once you clock him.”[at the 4:20 minute mark]
Once everybody remembers the hard elbow to the ribs Chuck gave Rodman during a particular matchup against the Bulls so him lasering in on hurting Dennis holds quite a bit of truth to it.