Why Sports Media Misses Dennis Rodman
Dennis Rodman; Hall of Fame basketball player, actor, diplomat, partier, and womanizer. These are just a few of the titles that Dennis Rodman has attached to his name. Since he is a star, the many facets of Rodman’s image, along with his outlandish behavior and lifestyle, induce a plethora of media attention. While in the NBA, his wild and untamed aggressiveness on the court was reflected in the way he lived off of the court. “The Worm” developed an affinity for stardom as his life was fueled by thousands of sexual relationships, partying, drugs and alcohol. Rodman’s behavior caught national media attention as he would dye his hair in outrageous colors, cover his body in piercings and tattoos, and even dress like a woman. He also gained mass popularity as he dated Madonna and married Carmen Electra. Rodman was present in the media on a daily basis, and he was under a severe amount of scrutiny and analysis. Consequently, Rodman’s star image is characterized by his off the court antics, instead of his success on the court. His actions are not what defines his relationship with the media, but it is the sheer fact that he does not wish to represent what he is supposed to that defines the relationship. Dennis Rodman exposes and explains the complicated relationships between stars and the media. The media’s depiction of Dennis Rodman’s star image inspired him to both challenge and reinforce who the media expects him to be. Rodman rebels against who he is supposed to be by challenging the dominant values of his star image.
Once the media realized that Rodman was capable of captivating viewers and readers with his antics, it became one of the most intriguing and well-documented relationships between the media and a star. The rejection of his star role is an obvious objection to the dominant values that the media has bestowed on him.
Today, the media is taking advantage of these types of relationships more than ever, but the players just don't take the bait quite like Dennis Rodman. To begin the NFL playoffs, RIchard Sherman refuses to talk to any reporter except for Ed Werder. Apparently Ed Werder is a greater guy than we could have imagined. Good for you Ed. For anyone that isn't Ed Werder, you cannot talk to the most dynamic personality in the league. Kaepernick's media luster has faded, and Manziel and long gone. In the NBA, there is not too many controversial or wild headlines except for what Russell Westbrook is wearing, Cavs vs. Warriors beef and whether or not J.R. Smith has a shirt on. Needless to say, sports media misses Dennis Rodman, and they are searching and searching for new stories.
Rodman spoon fed the media story after story, and he was not a flash in the pan media focus. He provided intoxicating stories with his balls to the wall style of play and style of life. It will be interesting to see who the next player is that can burn it at both ends as he gives it his all on and off the court. But for now, the media misses Dennis Rodman, and so does the sports world.