Dennis Rodman: “If Lebron was playing in the late ‘80s or early ‘90s, he’d be just an average player.”

Dennis Rodman

Dennis Rodman says LeBron James would have been an « average player » in the 1980s or 90s. OK.


In between being the United States’ top diplomat to North Korea, Dennis Rodman has found some time to say something dumb.

On The Dan Patrick Show, Rodman was talking about Michael Jordan and LeBron James and he said this:

“If LeBron was playing in the late ’80s or early ’90s, he’d be just an average player.”

All right, then. Go on.

« To do what Michael has done. What he did was more charisma, was more articulate and stuff like that, » Rodman said. « LeBron’s more like boom (?). There ain’t no flash to his game. He’s a great player, don’t get me wrong — he’s a helluva player given his size and that. But to me, Scottie and Michael is probably the best 1-2 punch I’ve ever seen. »

It’s an annoying trend we see from retired players, romancing their old days as tougher and more physical and made for manlier men that have the guts and strength to play. What about a 6-foot-8, 260-pound beast that has the athleticism of a guard and power and size of a power forward wouldn’t translate to any era?

I think what Rodman is trying to do is reinforce his belief that Jordan is the greatest player ever and no one will ever match that. As he should. He was MJ’s teammate and won rings with him. Rodman obviously has a strong affection for him.

“If Michael played today … really? » he said. « If he played the game today at 28 years old, he would average 40 points a game, probably more. He would average that, easy. »

“I’m just sick and tired of people always comparing him and Michael Jordan. It’s a whole different era, man.”

If you listen to the interview, I don’t even think Rodman knows what he’s saying. But he said it, and he seemed pretty adamant about it.

« Back then you could hit people, knock ’em down, take your free throw, get back up, » Rodman said. « And LeBron, you can’t do that. All they’re doing today is bitching. Bitching about a foul. All they do is bitch. »

Rodman, one of the greatest rebounders and defenders ever, talked about the opportunity to guard LeBron.

« If he scored on me, I’d be like OK, thanks. But sooner or later, somebody’s got to win, somebody’s got to lose. And I don’t lose. »

Rodman also said it would be « no contest » with his Bulls playing today’s Heat. He said they were smarter players and that they’d match up « easy. »

« I’d take Bosh out of his damn game, easy, » he said. « That’s not even a problem. »

Rodman did address his trip to North Korea, though.

« Only reason I went to North Korea, I went for a documentary where I tried to teach kids about basketball, » he said. « I didn’t go over there to meet Kim Un, Un, whatever. I went over there for one thing and that was to teach kids how to play basketball. But once he got word I was there, he said he wanted to meet me, and ever since then, he went out of his own way. It’s not a politcal thing; it’s a level of basketball thing. »

Probably the smartest thing Rodman said in this interview.

Anyway, his comments on LeBron really just serve as a reminder that even though he’s retired, we still probably shouldn’t take anything Dennis Rodman says too seriously.


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