Craig Sager Talked Dennis Rodman Out of Suicide in 1993
Usually you don’t start hearing all the crazy stories about awesome people until after they’re gone. (See Rogers, Prince Nelson.) That won’t be the case with Craig Sager, though, whether we lose him in six months or sixteen years. And we have Sports Illustrated’s Lee Jenkins to thank for that.
Jenkins wrote the cover story for the Craig Sager issue that came out this week. The whole thing is excellent, and you really should read it. But when it comes to crazy stories, one brilliant passage in particular stands out.
Have a look:
Sager is not the guy who provides dissertations on pick-and-roll defense. He is the guy who once slept next to the stall of Seattle Slew the night before the horse won the Triple Crown, who bailed Morganna the Kissing Bandit out of jail, who surprised Shaquille O’Neal by boat at his Isleworth home. An interview with Sager should really be conducted at the dog track, where he used to own greyhounds, or a Hooters, where servers clad in Sager Orange bring him Bud Light and buffalo shrimp. He should be perched on a barstool next to his wife, Stacy—a former Bulls dancer 21 years his junior—regaling strangers with a story about Dennis Rodman, who went AWOL from the Pistons in 1993 and planned to commit suicide, until Sager tracked down the Worm on the second floor of a Detroit strip club. “The Landing Strip,” Sager recalls. “He had the gun. He was going to do it. I told him how stupid that would be.”
That’s right. Dennis Rodman was going to commit suicide in 1993, but Craig Sager convinced him not to.
In case you were wondering, there were reports about Rodman being suicidal at the time. According to one from the Los Angeles Times, Rodman left a suicide note before he went AWOL, and police eventually found him parked in the parking lot of the Palace of Auburn Hills with a loaded rifle in the back of his truck. There was no mention about Sager or the strip club, but you can see why they might leave out some of the details in a sensitive situation like that.
In any case, maybe Rodman would have actually done it. Maybe he wouldn’t have. The point here is that Craig Sager actually went and tracked the guy down. And that is amazing.
Hat Tip – [Sports Illustrated]