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Globetrotter Dennis Rodman Visits North Korea for the Third Time This Week: Can He Bring Change to Kim Jong Un?

( [email protected] ) Dec 18, 2013 05:53 PM EST
Dennis Rodman is making his third visit to North Korea this week in preparation for an exhibition game to be played on January 8 between the North Korean basketball team and former NBA players. According to CNN, Rodman plans to stay in the country until December 23 training the North Korean basketball team.
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 is making his third visit to North Korea this week in preparation for an exhibition game to be played on January 8 between the North Korean basketball team and former NBA players. According to CNN, Rodman plans to stay in the country until December 23 training the North Korean basketball team.

Kim Jong Un, who recently made headlines for executing his Uncle on charges of treason, was a big fan of the Chicago Bulls when Dennis Rodman and Michael Jordan helped lead the team to win several NBA championships. Rodman has now become a friend of the North Korean dictator, and has previously visited the enigmatic country twice this year.

Rodman is reportedly going to North Korea as a private citizen and a friend of Kim, who has scheduled the exhibition game between his country and former NBA players on his birthday in January. "The purpose of this trip is not to get involved with politics but to prove once again that sport has the power to rise above all issues," said Paddy Powder, the sponsor of Rodman's visit. 

CNN reports that the first half of the exhibition game will be between the U.S. and North Korea, and the second half will be a mixture of the two teams. Three members of the Harlem Globe Trotters visited North Korea earlier this year to play a similar type of exhibition game, which ended in a tie.