North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, left, and former NBA star Dennis Rodman watch North Korean and U.S. players in an exhibition basketball game at an arena in Pyongyang, North Korea, Thursday, Feb. 28, 2013. By Belo Content KMOV
Dennis Rodman, who was voted NBA Defensive Player of the Year twice during his Hall of Fame Career, says he deserves consideration for another honor: Nobel Peace Prize.
Rodman famously visited North Korea in February and sat next to Kim Jong Un - a diehard basketball fan - as they watched an exhibition game. The trip irked the U.S. government at a time of escalating tensions between Pyongyang and Washington.
"Why it's been left to me to smooth things over, I don't know. Dennis Rodman, of all people," said the former NBA forward, who tallied 212 technical fouls in his NBA career. "But I'll tell you this: If I don't finish in the top three for the next Nobel Peace Prize, something's seriously wrong."
Rodman also told the magazine that he plans to go back to North Korea in August to visit Kim - a.k.a. his "friend for life."
"I'm just gonna chill, play some basketball and maybe go on vacation with Kim and his family," Rodman said.
In May, Rodman attempted to leverage his relationship with Kim, calling on the North Korean leader to release Kenneth Bae, a Korean-American sentenced to 15 years of hard labor in the North.
So far, Kim has not granted that request. If he does, maybe Rodman could win the Nobel after all.