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North Korea wanted Jordan, eventually settled for Rodman

Feb 28, 2013, 3:32 PM EDT

Retired U.S. NBA basketball player Rodman is welcomed by Son, Vice Chairman of North Korea's Olympic Committe, as he arrives in Pyongyang Reuters

If you had to choose between Michael Jordan and Dennis Rodman… why am I even asking this? We’d all make the same choice.

North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un is the same way — he’s actually an NBA fan, particularly the 1990s Bulls just like his late father (Kim Jong Il). Seriously.

Vice Media sent a group to North Korea to do some basketball diplomacy (and make an HBO documentary slated for April), something welcomed by the usually closed North Korean government. Their first request was for one Michael Jordan nearly a decade ago, reported the San Diego Union Tribune (via the Washington Post).

The following year, Jordan’s management team was approached about the athlete making a goodwill trip to Pyongyang to meet Kim. The North Korean government, according to documents obtained by The San Diego Union-Tribune, sent a letter authorizing the request, and Samsung, a South Korean electronics company interested in promoting reunification of the Koreas, had offered to underwrite the venture.

Jordan respectfully declined.

So they eventually went with another legendary Bulls player, Rodman.

And he and Kim hit it off, reports the Los Angeles Times.

According to a spokesman for the film crew, Rodman told Kim that “You have a friend for life.”

It’s Rodman. I couldn’t make this stuff up if I tried.

  1. sun602 - Feb 28, 2013 at 3:45 PM

    I wonder if Rodman and Metta World Peace hang out on the weekends

    • zxrated - Feb 28, 2013 at 4:20 PM

      Metta would have thrown an elbow at Kim setting of an international indecent.

  2. thebigcaptain2011 - Feb 28, 2013 at 4:09 PM

    That goodwill trip had the potential to start World War 3. Just imagine if my dude Dennis had gotten at one of Kim Jong Un’s daughters!

    • emosnar - Feb 28, 2013 at 4:31 PM

      Im sure Un would be quite honored.

      • thebigcaptain2011 - Feb 28, 2013 at 4:34 PM

        True True

    • psung26 - Feb 28, 2013 at 7:42 PM

      Skip Bayless called, he wants his WW3 line back

  3. acdc363 - Feb 28, 2013 at 4:30 PM

    Vice is awesome.

  4. mannyicey - Feb 28, 2013 at 5:10 PM

    Kim Jong Un’s daughter is 2 years old.

    • kindasporty - Feb 28, 2013 at 7:42 PM

      exactly

    • cosanostra71 - Feb 28, 2013 at 11:02 PM

      ah man, why you gotta go and ruin the joke with your silly facts!

  5. necr0philia - Feb 28, 2013 at 9:41 PM

    Did Dennis go as himself or the guy in that Jean Claude Van Damme movie? Doesn’t really matter they were both (NOT STRAIGHT).

  6. badintent - Feb 28, 2013 at 10:59 PM

    Dennis should have brough ex -girl friend Carmen Electa as a honey trap with him. Kim Kim would have had a heart attack in the sack with her and we might have had someone new in charge that we could have a meanfull conversation wiith. With RodmanI mean.

  7. BigBeachBall - Feb 28, 2013 at 11:11 PM

    The Worm is in North Korea right now…. anybody surprised?

  8. j0esixpack - Feb 28, 2013 at 11:52 PM

    Ambassador Rodman.

    Yet another sign of the coming apocalypse

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