Washington, Jan 8: The ten-member team of retired US basketball players, who have been brought by controversial NBA legend Dennis Rodman to play in North Korea, are reportedly rethinking their decision of coming to the country following Rodman’s outburst in a TV appearance.
In a bizarre TV appearance, the NBA Hall of Famer, who is known as much for his erratic behavior as the rebounding and defense he provided alongside Michael Jordan during his days in Chicago Bulls, tried to defend the trip to the communist dictatorship.
According to Fox News, onetime NBA star Charles Smith, who had a stellar career with three teams, said the team, which is planning to play an exhibition game against a team of North Koreans has become ‘dwarfed’ by the spectacle that is Rodman, adding that their message is not being conveyed properly due to the circumstances that are much bigger than them.
When asked about North Korea’s abysmal human rights record, Rodman, known during his playing days as ‘The Worm’, shouted that there are ten ‘guys’ with him who have left their ‘damn’ families to help North Korea in a sports venture.
Most former NBA players seemed to want no part of the trip and the National Basketball Retired Players Association (NBRPA) denounced the basketball exhibition, saying that under the right circumstances, basketball can serve as a bridge to bring communities together, but these are not those circumstances.
Smith, who played on the 1988 U.S. Olympic team and later represented the US in the World Games in 1998, said that although he felt proud to be on the world stage at that time, he feels the reverse now, adding that they can understand why ‘things’ are being portrayed the way they are. (ANI)