Jan 7, 2014, 7:55 PM EDT
Dennis Rodman’s plan to take former NBA players to North Korea for a bit of “basketball diplomacy” to help celebrate the birthday of that nation’s dictator Kim Jong Un is not turning out like he planned.
Shocking, I know. Who could possibly have seen that coming?
Equally as shocking, David Stern tried to distance the NBA from the event while some of the players who agreed to go over there with Rodman are having second thoughts.
Stern, the NBA’s commissioner, went on CNN — the network where Rodman had his odd rant about the North Korea trip — and worked hard to distance the league from this.
“Well, the entire team is composed of former NBA players, OK, and for what I would guess is a relatively large sum of money, they have agreed to go and give a birthday present to the leader. We did not sanction this. This is not part of us. We wouldn’t do such a thing without collaborating with the U.S. State Department….
“(The other players) were blinded by the payday. I don’t know what else to say or how directly to say it. That’s all. And Charles should have known better. But he didn’t in this case. And I’m sure he’s sorry for what he’s doing.”
Charles Smith, the former Knick who sat by Rodman in an earlier CNN interview, did indeed express regret over how this entire event has gone in speaking to the Associated Press.
“What we are doing is positive, but it is getting dwarfed by the other circumstances around it,” Smith told the Associated Press on Tuesday. “Apparently our message is not being conveyed properly due to the circumstances that are much bigger than us, and I think that has to do with politics and government…
“Some of the statements and things that Dennis has said has tainted our efforts,” Smith said. “Dennis is a great guy, but how he articulates what goes on — he gets emotional and he says things that he’ll apologize for later….
“I feel a lot of remorse for the guys because we are doing something positive, but it’s a lot bigger than us. We are not naive, we understand why things are being portrayed the way they are. We can’t do anything about that; if we could, we would.”
Dennis Rodman likes attention. He’s getting it. The fact that he has a “friend” who has done some pretty inhumane things doesn’t factor into that equation for him.
I pity the other guys on the trip somewhat, but they made their bed. Smith says they were not naïve, but they may have been to the scope of the issue.
- Tony ‘First Team All-Defense’ Allen and Mike ‘Masked Assassin’ Conley lead Grizzlies to Game 2 win over Warriors 3
- Hawks unimpressive, but pull away late for Game 2 win over Wizards 0
- Mike Conley playing Game 2 against Warriors tonight 0
- John Wall out for Wizards-Hawks Game 2 tonight 3
- PBT Extra: Will Doc Rivers sit Chris Paul in Game 2? 0
- Tony Allen on MVP Stephen Curry: “It ain’t nothing I ain’t never seen before” 22
- PBT Extra: Grizzlies searching for answers, Mike Conley in Game 2 3
- PBT Extra: Hawks need to lean on starters more, hit open looks in Game 2 0