Dennis Rodman reveals that he and Scottie Pippen did not talk to each other for the first 6 months of the 72-10 Chicago Bulls season.
The internal struggles the Chicago Bulls faced in their second 3-peat from 1996-98 have been well-documented over the past few decades. A major factor in this was the signing of one of the most polarizing players to have ever suited up to hit NBA hardwood, Dennis Rodman.
The ultimate wildcard, there was no telling what Dennis Rodman was going to say or do next. From marrying himself to his sexual exploits, everything was on the table for Rodman. The one consistent aspect of Dennis Rodman’s life was his attitude towards basketball.
Rodman would face off against Scottie Pippen and Michael Jordan in the late 80s and early 90s in the Eastern Conference Finals while with the Detroit Pistons.
The ‘Bad Boy Pistons’ were given the name for a reason as they intended on physically hurting both Pippen and Jordan during games. The hot-headed rebounder got into several fights during his playing days, not limited to guys who would become his future teammates.
Dennis Rodman had to apologize to Scottie Pippen before joining the Bulls
The Pistons and Bulls rivalry came to an end at the tail-end of the Pistons’ dynasty. With their stars aging, they were bested by the Chicago Bulls in a clean sweep in the ECF. Frustrated by the Pistons’ inability to 3-peat, Dennis Rodman unleashed his rage on a 3rd year Scottie Pippen, giving him a hard shove.
This required Scottie to get 6 stitches to cover up the nasty gash. Pippen and the Bulls deserve a lot of credit as they didn’t let the Pistons’ mind games get to them and did not retaliate as they knew they had taken over the reins as Eastern Conference champions.
DENNIS RODMAN, one of the greatest & craziest rebounders & defenders ever!
30+ REB: 5 x
25+ REB: 33 x
20+ REB: 167 x
— Ballislife.com (@Ballislife) March 24, 2021
Dennis Rodman would later say that he knew the Pistons were going to lose so why not hurt Pippen in the process. “At the time I was frustrated. Our team was losing so I said, ‘Screw it’.” it was revealed later on that Rodman had to apologize to Scottie Pippen for the incident before joining forces with him on the Bulls, 4 years later.
Scottie Pippen and Dennis Rodman did not talk to one another for 6 months
Seems as though the ‘Worm’s’ apology did little to nothing for Pippen as he had no intention of talking to Rodman even after having spent 6 whole months with him, playing alongside him. This did not bother Dennis however, as he came to the Chicago Bulls to win and nothing else.
He was also slightly irked by the fact that he had sat down with Scottie to settle their differences at Phil Jackson’s request, prior to the season, and yet the 6x champ refused to make amends. Nevertheless, everything came to a simmer when the Bulls started to rack up wins, reaching an otherworldly record of 72-10.
This caused Scottie Pippen to see how hard Rodman plays on defense and on the glass, resulting in him respecting him, and eventually befriending him.