June 01, 2003

Dennis Rodman:: In a weird 'where are they now' profile. (ny times link)

posted by oliver_crunk to basketball at 07:11 PM - 10 comments

kind of sad when you think he's a lot more shocking than, say, alf. he'd be a lot more entertaining than carrottop or whatever his name is. but somehow i still believe rodman ain't going out like that.

posted by oliver_crunk at 07:14 PM on June 01, 2003

They called Dennis Rodman "one of the greatest basketball players of all time". Define one of. He never scored!

posted by therev at 07:19 PM on June 01, 2003

He was one of the greatest defenders of his era, besides the greatest rebounder of all time, and won five rings in the team sport where individuals make the most difference. So, yeah, he should be a sure-fire first-ballot hall of famer, assuming the voters can look past his personality and focus on his skills. By my count, that's 'one of the greatest basketball players of all time.'

posted by tieguy at 10:34 PM on June 01, 2003

Nahh, he wasn't one of the greatest basketball players of all time. Got nothing against Rodman but I don't think that at any point in his career he was one of the top 30 guys in the league. Concentrate on trade value ... I think that at any point during his career there were at least 30 guys that other teams wouldn't trade for Rodman (and I'm not dinging him for his personality). He's like Ben Wallace (who Washington and Orlando gave up on). I would love to have Ben Wallace and his afro on my team but there are at least 20-30 guys I'd rather have. And Wallace is the best defensive player in the NBA, not just a great one on one defender.

posted by Mike McD at 10:54 PM on June 01, 2003

You know we often say the great players like Jordan, Magic, Bird, Isaiah, make the players around them better. Because it is a team game. I think Rodman did that. Anybody who can be 6'9" or so and guard Shaq (which he did) has to be considered darn good, especially with the gaudy rebounding numbers he had. He was also quite adept at the triangle offense. His passes often were a bit too hot for the recipients, but his angles and anticipation were good. As for Wallace, check out the Sports Guy's column. He is pretty good with the NBA except for his Boston love and Detroit and LA hate. He lists Ben Wallace as the 17th best player in the league. I'd maybe put him up a few more notches than that. If the Paul Pierces of the league were really the best players why did Team Usa do horribly at the World Championships?

posted by BobbyLove at 07:30 AM on June 02, 2003

I think Rodman deserves a mention among the greats of his era, regardless of the fact he specialized entirely on defense. He was the centerpiece of a Pistons team that redefined how basketball was played in the '80s and '90s. Even though I didn't like that style of play, you gotta respect the impact they had. As for the profile, it's tiresome to see someone who hasn't figured out how to get away from a contrived public persona. The guy should blow a little less money on strangers showing up at his house uninvited and a little more on therapists.

posted by rcade at 08:09 AM on June 02, 2003

19 shots with Jager in them! my god! never challenge rodman to a drinking game.

posted by corpse at 10:01 AM on June 02, 2003

Mike McD, I think BobbyLove and rcade have it right about Rodman. He was a tremendous impact player. Consider that there are people who still think Bill Russell was the greatest NBA player of all-time, and Russell was primarily a leader and defensive specialist.

posted by cg1001a at 12:24 PM on June 02, 2003

19 shots with Jager I'd be dead after that, or at least I'd want to die. It's too bad that he's so messed up, since he has young children. It's hard to genuinely feel bad for him: there are millions more that didn't have his opportunities. Hopefully he'll save enough money for the therapy his kids are going to so badly need.

posted by dusted at 01:39 PM on June 02, 2003

I agree that Ben Wallace and Bill Russell are great players. No doubt about it but I think they are dominating defenders in a way Rodman never was. The obvious difference is that Rodman was a tremendous one on one defender. He could completely take one guy out of his game. Wallace and Russell are shot blockers who change how the other team plays. I think the latter is far more valuable. There was an NCAA tourney game where Shaq set the record for blocks against BYU (11) where he completely changed the way BYU was playing. Rodman just didn't affect games like that. I don't have time now but I'll try and find a league roster from the year Rodman averaged 18.3 boards and pick out all the guys Detroit would have traded Rodman for. Rodman was the ultimate role player, not even a second fiddle player. If you needed someone to play defense and rebound he was perfect, but zero offense. To put in baseball terms, it would kind of be like saying Rey Ordonez is one of the greatest players in MLB. Rodman was good, he just wasn't one of the greatest players of all time

posted by Mike McD at 03:04 PM on June 02, 2003

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