Relaymedia

Dennis Rodman to Visit North Korea for Third Time, Prepare North Korean Basketball Team for NBA Exhibition Game

( [email protected] ) Dec 05, 2013 12:32 PM EST
Dennis Rodman plans to visit the Democratic People's Republic of Korea for the third time this December to help coach the North Korean basketball team. Rodman, once a star player for the Chicago Bulls, has formed a friendship with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un through their mutual love for basketball.
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, left, and former NBA star Dennis Rodman watch North Korean and U.S. players in an exhibition basketball game at an arena in Pyongyang, North Korea, Thursday, Feb. 28, 2013. (AP Photo/VICE Media, Jason Mojica)

Dennis Rodman plans to visit the Democratic People's Republic of Korea for the third time this December to help coach the North Korean basketball team. Rodman, once a star player for the Chicago Bulls, has formed a friendship with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un through their mutual love for basketball.

Rodman, now 52 and retired from basketball, was once known for his tenacious defense and rebounding ability, for having tattoos and colorful hair, and for his on and off-the-court antics. He helped lead the Chicago Bulls to three NBA championships in the late 1990s, and was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 2011. Rodman has also dabbled in professional wrestling and acting. Now, the retired NBA star is a "friend for life" of North Korean communist dictator Kim Jong-un, who threatened to attack the United States in April of this year.

Kim and his family are enthusiastic fans of the Chicago Bulls, who won six NBA championships in the 1990s. Rodman was given the opportunity to visit North Korea for the first time in February, along with three Harlem Globe Trotters who played in an exhibition game with North Korea's basketball team during their time there. Rodman watched a basketball game with Kim Jong-Un on his second visit to North Korea in September, and dined with the dictator at his retreat. Rodman seems to genuinely like Kim, who has reportedly encouraged him to tell the United States "positive, and very good things" about his country.

CNN reports that Rodman's third visit to North Korea is scheduled for December 18, where he plans to help coach the North Korean basketball team for an upcoming exhibition game against former NBA stars in January of 2014. Rodman plans to bring a film crew with him on his third visit, and HBO is expected to produce a documentary series upon his return.