Dennis Rodman’s tenacity as a defender and rebounder was integral to the Bulls’ second three-peat. So in turn, his eccentric perspective was integral to creating “The Last Dance.”
But apparently, that perspective wasn’t easy to lure out of him. On the most recent episode of ESPN’s “Jalen and Jacoby,” the director of “The Last Dance,” Jason Hehir, detailed a bizarre experience interviewing Rodman for the documentary, in which Rodman showed up to their agreed-upon location two hours late — bleary-eyed — early in the afternoon, allegedly unsure of what he was being interviewed for. During Hehir and Rodman’s actual conversation, his attention was scattershot.
Those tropes are predictable, but the details still astound — even after all these years of knowing and studying The Worm like the city of Chicago has:
“He’s like, 'Ten hours (for this documentary), huh?' I was like, 'Yeah.' He’s like, 'Alright, I’ll give you 10 minutes,'” Hehir recalled. “Every page of questions I have (for him to answer) is an hour. I have 11 pages for this guy and he’s saying 10 minutes.
“So he sits down. I’m just kind of shooting the s**t with him, and he says, ‘I need a tuna sub from Subway and some chamomile tea.’ It was like Chappelle sending the guys for a sugar cookie in Queens. Unless you pass this test, you cannot do this interview. So we got him the tuna sub, we got him the chamomile tea, and he sat down for three hours. But that is a difficult guy to interview.”
In Rodman’s Detroit years, he reportedly enjoyed glasses of milk at night clubs. By the late 1990s, it was 48 hours of hard partying in Vegas in the middle of a season. Now, in retirement, his fix appears to be tuna subs and chamomile tea.
Dennis Rodman is truly an enigma who will never stop evolving. But at the end of the day, we’d trade a hundred hoagies for all he gave to this project.