Dennis Rodman's NBA Hall of Fame Speech Draws Tears (Video)
The polarizing NBA legend choked up repeatedly while speaking at the 2011 induction ceremony, which aired live on NBA TV.
Five time NBA champion Dennis Rodman was inducted into the Hall of Fame on Friday, Aug. 13. Though he was one of a class of nine, it was Rodman's words that stole the spotlight of the awards ceremony -- to no one's surprise.
Several legends sang Rodman's praises in his tribute video, including Chicago Bulls' teammate Michael Jordan, but it was Rodman's own heartfelt and personal speech that won over the crowd.
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Accompanied by his two young children, Rodman took to the stage in an unsurprisingly flamboyant feather boa and jacket with two of his team names, Pistons and Bulls, emblazoned on the back, with his numbers on each arm and initials on the front.
"I didn't play the game for the money, I didn't play the game to be famous," he said while choking back tears. "What you see here is just more the illusion that I love to just be an individual that is very colorful."
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Rodman has made headlines for his brash behavior both on and off the court, becoming arguably the most polarizing player in the game over the course of his 14-year NBA career and beyond.
"This game has been very good to me. I could have been anywhere in the world. I could have been dead, I could have been a drug dealer, I could have been homeless -- I was homeless," he continued. "A lot of you guys here in the Hall of Fame know what I'm talking about, living in the projects and trying to get out of the projects. And I did that, but it took a lot of hard work and a lot of bumps along the road."
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Chris Mullin, Arvydas Sabonis, Artis Gilmore, Stanford coach Tara VanDerveer, longtime head coach Tex Winter, Philadelphia University's Herb Magee, Teresa Edwards, Harlem Globetrotter Reece "Goose" Tatum and Tom "Satch" Sanders made up the complete class of 2011.
Watch Rodman's raw and heart tugging speech in the video above, in which he expresses his personal regrets and the desire to be a better father, son and husband. The ceremony aired live on NBA TV at 7 p.m. EST.