Rodman stunned by Hall of Fame induction

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Rodman stunned by Hall of Fame induction


Dennis Rodman and Chris Mullin, right, pose during the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame class announcement, Monday. [AP/YONHAP]

HOUSTON - Irreverent and outrageous on and off the basketball court, Dennis Rodman admitted on Monday he believed his eccentric lifestyle would keep him from being inducted into the Hall of Fame.

“I thought it was a joke,” the five-time NBA champion and defensive wizard said at a news conference on Monday when asked about his initial reaction to learning of his selection.

“I never even dreamed of this. I never even thought of being in the Hall of Fame .?.?. When I played, I did my job, had fun and entertained the crowd. This right here, I’m trying to soak it all in.”

Rodman’s appearance, as one might expect, differed greatly from the other Hall of Famers at Monday’s news conference.

While the other inductees were dressed in suits and ties, Rodman wore jeans, tennis shoes, a long-sleeve white shirt open to his navel, sunglasses, a black baseball cap and a leopard-print scarf.

“I’m lucky to be alive, lucky to be standing here talking to you guys. Sometimes I feel so out of place because of the way I am, the way I dress, the way I talk,” said Rodman.

“I like to go out, do certain things. The clubs, the beaches, do my thing. The guys here are very conservative, very laid back. I’m like the wild child here.”

Rodman’s life has been filled with parties, arrests and over-the-top attire. He was wearing two nose rings on Monday and his open shirt revealed a variety of tattoos.

“I say it like it is. This is the way I dress,” said Rodman, who was ejected from games numerous times for fighting with players and bickering with officials during a 14-season career.

“For me, I’ve been such a loner, such a freelance individual. I’m not disrespecting the hall, the guys here. This is me. It doesn’t make me less of an individual.”

Rodman was a two-time NBA defensive player of the year who led the league in rebounds per game for seven straight seasons.

He played for five teams while winning three titles with the Chicago Bulls and two with the Detroit Pistons.

“The way I am, I thought I wouldn’t get in [the hall],” he said. “I thought they’d say, ‘Dennis, you do too many things off the court that doesn’t represent the hall.’

“I didn’t take any offense. I just blew it off. I had a great time, a great career. But they were able to look past the negativity and say, ‘He changed the game.’”

Each of the Hall of Famers, including NBA greats Chris Mullin, Artis Gilmore and Tom “Satch” Sanders, offered a long list of people that helped them in their careers.

When Rodman, who played a supporting role for Michael Jordan in Chicago and Isiah Thomas in Detroit, was asked who he would like to thank, he paused to think.

“Me,” he said, as the audience of friends, basketball fans and reporters roared.

Enshrinement ceremonies will be held at the Springfield, Mass. hall on Aug. 11-13.


한글 관련 기사 [CBS노컷]

‘전설의 리바운더’ 데니스 로드맨, 명예의 전당 간다

1980~90년대 미국프로농구(NBA)에서 전설적인 리바운더로 명성을 떨쳤던 데니스 로드맨이 미국농구 명예의 전당에 입성한다.

로드맨은 2일(이하 한국시간) `ESPN`을 비롯한 미국 주요 언론과의 인터뷰에서 자신의 명예의 전당 입성이 결정됐다고 밝혔다. 로드맨은 이날 자신의 프로 첫 소속팀이었던 디트로이트 피스톤스가 마련한 영구결번식 기자회견 도중 다음주로 예정된 명예의 전당 발표 행사에 초청받았다는 사실을 공개했다.

로드맨이 참석하는 명예의 전당 입성 발표식은 미국대학농구(NCAA) 64강 토너먼트 결승이 열리는 4일 개최되고 공식 세리머니는 8월로 예정돼 있다.

그야말로 겹겹사다. 디트로이트는 시카고 불스와의 홈경기를 앞두고 1980년대 `배드 보이스(Bad boys)`의 멤버로 팀의 2년 연속 우승(1989,1990)에 기여했던 로드맨의 등번호 10번을 영구결번했다.

로드맨은 "내 등번호가 영구결번되다니 놀랍기만 하다. 디트로이트에서 공헌한 게 많지 않아 과연 이 영광을 누릴 자격이 있는지 모르겠다"고 소감을 밝혔다.

1986년 디트로이트에서 데뷔한 로드맨은 프로 통산 14시즌동안 평균 7.3점, 13.1리바운드를 기록했다. 1991-92시즌부터 무려 7시즌 연속 리바운드 1위에 오르는 기염을 토했다. 자신의 한 시즌 최다 기록은 디트로이트 시절이던 1991-92시즌에 기록한 18.7개. 자타가 공인하는 역대 최고의 리바운더였다.

디트로이트에서 2차례 우승을 경험한 로드맨은 샌안토니오 스퍼스를 거쳐 1995-96시즌부터 마이클 조던, 스카티 피펜이 속한 시카고 불스에 합류해 리그 3연패에 기여했다. 당시 로드맨은 NBA 파이널에서 숀 켐프, 칼 말론 등 당대 최고의 파워포워드들과 명승부를 펼쳐 팬들에게 깊은 인상을 남겼다.

1998년 시카고를 떠나 LA 레이커스에 합류한 로드맨은 2000년 댈러스 매버릭스에서 유니폼을 벗었다.

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