Skip to main content

Michael Jordan once described Rodman as "one of the most dominant players in basketball"


On October 3, 1995, the Chicago Bulls sent Will Purdue to San Antonio in exchange for Dennis Rodman -- the flamboyant forward who led the NBA in rebounding for four straight years.

Chicago's GM Jerry Krause and the team's head coach Phil Jackson met with Dennis for 36 hours before pulling the trigger on the deal. Ultimately, Phil was the one who made the decision to go through with the trade and acquire the league's most controversial personality.

I got to know a little about Dennis, that he’s overcome a lot of odds. He’s an awful strong individual and I’m confident he will take himself out of situations that have been tough for him his whole life.

Phil Jackson, Washington Post

The move was made with the approval of the Bulls superstars Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen, who were ready to look past the persona Rodman represented -- Phil described him as "extremely individualistic." Off the court, Dennis wanted to have freedom and the expression that gives, and as long as that didn't interfere with the team on the court, the Bulls were OK with it. What Rodman said after joining the team only made them even more confident that would be the case.

Scroll to Continue

Recommended Articles

I think I'm just part of the components that run this computer, that's it.

Dennis Rodman

Jordan, in particular, was very excited to play with Rodman. Personality aside, he knew what the 34-year-old would bring to the table basketball-wise. Coming off his first retirement, Mike felt re-energized to once again embark on a quest for multiple NBA championships. He felt Rodman, "one of the most dominant players in basketball," was just the right guy to do it with.

Very few players are making All-Star teams off of defense and rebounds. Scottie and I talk about it all the time; we sit down, we watch him and it's like, 'it's good to have him on our team instead of facing him.' He is by far the best rebounder I've ever seen. He doesn't have the oversized physique to help him in that; it's just his heart and desire and the ability to go get the ball.

Michael Jordan

You know how the rest of the story goes; the Bulls won their second three-peat, with Rodman being a crucial component of the greatest computer in NBA history. Everything MJ said about him, the 6-7 forward displayed on the court, becoming the team's most valuable contributor outside their iconic duo.

He still had his antics which would've had him fired on any other NBA team. But the Bulls were able to look past it. What they got in return made their effort worthwhile. And MJ knew that would be the case from the moment they acquired The Worm.

Ron Harper

"I want the SOB out of here" — How the NBA's drug problem got Ron Harper traded out of Cleveland

Lenny Wilkens believes that if the Cleveland Cavaliers had kept Ron Harper, then they would've ousted Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls

Bronny James

“He’s gonna be a whole different beast” - Gilbert Arenas praises Bronny James Jr. after a request to scout him by Lebron James

Arenas recalls when LeBron told him to scout his son Bronny and give him an honest opinion on whether he has any potential to be a legitimate basketball player

LeBron James & John Salley

John Salley praises LeBron James for calling out the media’s coverage of the Jerry Jones picture - “Everybody wanting to call LeBron a sellout; no, you can’t”

Salley believes that James can no longer be labeled a sellout after he stepped up and voiced his concerns on an issue that not many people are paying attention to

Kristaps Porzingis & Luka Doncic

Kristaps Porzingis opens up about his failed partnership with Luka Doncic and the Dallas Mavericks - “I just wasn’t the right guy”

When asked about his failed stint with the Mavs, Porzingis admitted that he and Luka Doncic were not a strong fit on the court together

New York Knicks center Patrick Ewing

"I'm here and I plan to finish my career here" — when Patrick Ewing left the New York Knicks for the Seattle Supersonics

Patrick Ewing hinted at how things played out with him and the Knicks that prompted him to leave the team in 2000.

michael-jordan-luc-longley-min (1)

Luc Longley on Michael Jordan’s only condition to end the Chicago Bulls’ practice sessions

Luc Longley gave us a peek into Michael Jordan's obsession with competition and winning.

Los Angeles Lakers guard Isaiah Thomas

“You're not given a real chance” — Isaiah Thomas breaks down 10-day contracts in the NBA

Former Boston Celtics All-Star Isaiah Thomas opens up about the reality of 10-day contracts in the NBA.

Charlotte Hornets guard Tony Parker

Almost lifers — stars who played their entire career for a single NBA franchise until their last season

As it turns out, all five guys probably would've been better off just retiring as icons of their original teams.