There might not be a more unique player in NBA history than Dennis Rodman. Known just as much for his antics off the court, the eccentric personality has a knack for baffling people with the decisions he makes even in retirement. On the court, however, Rodman was one of the best defenders and rebounders the league had ever seen — and he got paid handsomely to do so.
Despite this, Rodman’s finances took a dive in retirement. His once-lucrative net worth has dwindled surprisingly more than most expect.
Dennis Rodman’s playing career
Nothing about Rodman’s career was normal. At 25 years old in his rookie season, he was older than the average person entering the NBA. Rodman was a second-round pick in the 1986 NBA Draft thanks in large part to his age and the fact that Southeastern Oklahoma State was not a typical breeding ground for NBA talent.
Rodman persisted, however, and found himself with consistent rotational minutes on the Bad Boy Detroit Pistons team. With Isiah Thomas, Joe Dumars, and Bill Laimbeer leading, Rodman provided defense and rebounding off the bench. He won two rings and made his only two All-Star games as a member of the Pistons.
Rodman spent seven years in Detroit before a two-year stint in San Antonio. He played alongside David Robinson as a Spur, giving him a formidable frontcourt partner to clean up the boards and guard the other team. Robinson provided the scoring, although there were some bumps along the way. Rodman’s next move, however, defined his career.
Rodman’s glory years
Although Rodman’s best years were in Detroit, the modern, younger NBA audience associates him with the Chicago Bulls. In 1995, he signed with the Bulls, fresh off Jordan’s late-season comeback. This proved to be a vital move for both parties, as Rodman helped secure the team’s frontcourt.
Despite being 34 years old when he first suited up for Chicago, Rodman was in prime form, averaging just over 15 rebounds a game and providing his signature lockdown defense. With Jordan and Pippen at the helm, Rodman landed in the perfect spot for a player who didn’t need to score to be a star. This defined the second three-peat and made Rodman an international superstar.
His three-year stint with the Bulls ended when the team started over after the 1998 season. After brief stints with the Lakers and Mavericks, Rodman was out of the league. He spent several years playing overseas before calling it quits.
Rodman had off-the-court interests, but not the business moves his teammate, Jordan, had on the side. Rodman was making movies with Jean-Claude Van Damme, wrestling, writing autobiographies, grabbing tabloid headlines, and making a reputation as the wild child of the NBA.
Rodman’s last stops in Los LA and Dallas were both cut short thanks to his knack for distraction and tendency to show up late and uninterested to games and practice alike. He made money, but he also spent it unwisely.
Twenty years after forcibly retiring from the NBA, he is not basking in financial glory but barely clinging to his earnings.
What is Dennis Rodman’s net worth?
Rodman’s lifestyle off the court hurt his bank account, but a financial advisor also scammed him along with several other pro athletes. Peggy Ann Fulford managed many pro basketballers. In 2019, news broke that she was stealing money from them, leaving several broke. This combined with Rodman’s other eccentricities gutted his bank account.
Rodman made $27 million during his career on top of his pop culture appearances. Thanks to everything, he’s currently worth $500,000. This is a good living for those who haven’t experienced the riches Rodman had. For a player who could’ve been set for life, however, it shows just how quickly those riches can go away.
Rodman will always be a complicated figure. His story shows the dangers of being unwise with finances. Otherwise, life after sports can be a rough go.