Just when you think Dennis Rodman has done everything crazy that you could possibly think of, think again. The Hall of Fame basketball player has a children’s book these days, but says he’s continuing to travel the world like he did when he was a player. He discusses his career, his changing hair colors and why NBA teams trying to buy rings today just won’t have success in the following interview. Dennis Rodman joined WFAN in New York with Evan Roberts to discuss his new children’s book, his Hall of Fame status, his ever-changing hair colors, being one of the best rebounders in NBA history, franchises trying to buy rings by assembling a group of great players and if there’s anyone in the NBA today that reminds him of himself.
What was your inspiration in writing a children’s book?
“That’s the whole thing about this book, man. People have known me for doing a lot of things in the world. I’ve wrote like four books already, five to be exact. They’ve been pretty entertaining; they’ve been pretty real. So I’m just saying, why not? I’m a kid at heart pretty much.”
The title is “Dennis the Wild Bull.” Was it named after your years with Chicago?
“No, it just seemed appropriate. I could’ve wrote it with fictional characters and stuff like that, but this is more animated and fun for kids to read. It’s for their enjoyment. It’s the way I’ve lived, pretty much, over the last 25 years. My kids are pretty much just like me. I just wrote it in honor of my kids and just hope that all the kids today would just look at it and have fun with it.”
Were you ever nervous that you wouldn’t get in the Hall of Fame?
“I think a lot of guys in the world of sports or was in sports … like Michael Jordan, Kareem, Magic and Bird, they expected to be in the Hall of Fame because they have the highest reputation as far as being an athlete. … As for me, I didn’t even looked at it like that. Me playing basketball, to be in the Hall of Fame, I never looked at it like that. If I didn’t get in the Hall of Fame, life goes on either way. I did some things that people can’t say they’ve done. I won five championship rings with great players and it was just a pleasure playing with those guys.”
What inspired you to do the ever-changing hair color thing?
“It was actually an accident. I was really bored and it’s funny in the fact that people don’t even know this status about me. When I played with San Antonio — and people don’t even realize I played with San Antonio — they don’t realize the fact that we were 69-13. Nobody even knows that stat. It’s amazing like that. As far as my hair color, it was an accident. I went to the barber shop and salon and the guys pulled me aside. … I didn’t know he was going to change it blond until I woke up out of the chair and said, ‘Oh hell. Well, OK, cool.’ I just stuck with it … and my career took off.”
On being a better rebounder than most big men despite their advantage in height:
“Jayson Williams is like 6-10 and 260. I was only 6-6 and 220. … People say, ‘How can you do that?’ … I played against guys like Shaq and all these big guys — 7-foot-2, 300 pounds. That’s probably the reason why I think my whole career is just so incredible is just my size. I guarded Michael Jordan, I guarded Larry Bird, I guarded Magic Johnson. Anybody that I had to stop, I had to go stop, and still do all the other things.”
On franchises trying to buy rings:
“Every team now, everyone’s trying to buy a championship. Everyone’s trying to buy one instead of going out there and playing to win one. They’re trying to buy it by having all these great players on one team. That just doesn’t work. If you ain’t got the dedication and the desire to go win, you can have … four great players and have role players — that’s what you really need.”
Is there anybody in the game today who reminds you of you?
“I really don’t watch basketball that much anymore. … I do a lot of things, writing books, been on TV shows, doing this, doing that. … Those are the things I’ve been doing the last 20 years. … I’ve had my time in the NBA. I’ve done everything I needed to do in the NBA. I don’t regret the fact I had to retire the way I did. I don’t regret any of those things.”