One of the latest episodes of ESPN’s ‘The Last Dance,’ their documentary series on the 1997-98 Chicago Bulls, focused on Dennis Rodman’s mid-season Vegas trip.
The Bulls allowed Dennis Rodman to take a holiday to Las Vegas midway through the season. Scottie Pippen missed 35 games because of an ankle injury and Rodman behaved well in that time and was an anchor of the team, which prompted him to tell head coach Phil Jackson that he needed a vacation once Pippen came back.
Jackson allowed Rodman to go to Las Vegas for 48 hours. Michael Jordan protested about the wisdom of allowing Rodman to make the trip, telling Phil Jackson that Rodman would not come back on time.
Michael Jordan revealed what he told Phil Jackson: “You let him go on vacation, we’re not going to see him. You let him go to Vegas, and we’re definitely not going to see him.”
Jordan was right and he had to make the 1,747-mile trip from Chicago to Las Vegas himself to pull Rodman out of his hotel room, which it turns out that he was sharing with actress and then-girlfriend Carmen Electra.
“He didn’t come back on time, we had to go get his ass out of bed. I’m not going to say what was in his bed, where he was, blah blah blah.”
Electra did share what happened: “It was on, the party was starting right away,” she explained in the documentary. “We’d go to his favorite restaurant, then we’d go to a night club, then we’d go to after hours, it didn’t stop.
It was definitely an occupational hazard to be Dennis’ girlfriend. He was wild.
There was a knock on the door, it’s Michael Jordan, and I hid.
I didn’t want him to see me like that, so I’m just hiding behind the couch with covers over me.”
“Come on, we got to get to practice,” Jordan told Rodman.
Rodman’s Basketball IQ was unmatched and he came back and didn’t miss a beat. He even outperformed the entire team in a conditioning session.