Dennis Rodman played with two NBA legends – Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant.
In a new talk with VladTV, Rodman explained the main difference between playing with Jordan and Bryant. He thinks Jordan had a stronger desire to win compared to Bryant.
Dennis Rodman on Michael Jordan vs Kobe Bryant
“You get something similar, but I think Michael was more driven to win. We’re gonna win, and he took control of that. I give him that credit right there. I give him that. Scottie had that will too, but Kobe became like that. Kobe started to emulate his game like Michael,” Rodman said.
Rodman then used a clever comparison to explain the difference in how Jordan and Bryant played basketball.
“I think Kobe was more like a gymnast when he played and Michael’s more like [Mikhail] Baryshnikov a ballet dancer because you know most of the times he played on his toes, and when he does shift, it’s always like boom boom. All of a sudden, like one-two punch. I think everybody tried to say Kobe’s just like Michael, and I think that’s what give him that praise at his funeral. I think he realized the fact that, ‘Yeah,'” he added.
Rodman played with Jordan for three seasons from 1996 to 1998. During that time, the Bulls won their second three-peat, and Jordan earned six championship rings and six Finals MVPs. Jordan retired in 1998 and Rodman then joined the Lakers in the 1998-99 season and played 23 games with Kobe Bryant. Even in that short time, Rodman observed that Jordan was more motivated to win. Kobe Bryant retired in 2016 with five NBA Championships, one less than Jordan.
Rodman claims Kobe and Shaquille O’Neal were jealous of him
While playing for the Lakers, Rodman’s stats were 2.1 points, 11.2 rebounds, and 1.3 assists per game. After that, he left the Lakers and joined the Dallas Mavericks. Rodman thinks Kobe and Shaq were jealous of him, which made him leave.
“It was hard because I knew the fact that Shaq and Kobe wouldn’t like me…. I knew Kobe and Shaq wouldn’t like me because the whole attention became Dennis. It shifted from them to me quick. You could see it in the stands and see it in the city. I’m not trying to do anything. They rarely would talk to me, even in games and stuff like that, they would rarely talk to me. I think that’s the main reason why they cut me,” he said.
After Rodman left, Kobe and Shaq won three consecutive NBA championships in 2000, 2001, and 2002. Unfortunately, Rodman was not on those winning teams.