9 Players the San Antonio Spurs held onto for too long

San Antonio Spurs, LaMarcus Aldridge, Pau Gasol
San Antonio Spurs, LaMarcus Aldridge, Pau Gasol / Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports
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7. Dennis Rodman

Rodman’s basketball journey is a wild one. He was a late bloomer that did not enter the NBA until he was 25. The 6’7 forward became a legend as he helped the Pistons win back-to-back championships in 1989 and 1990. He played his first six seasons in Detroit under the legendary Chuck Daly, who Rodman viewed as a father figure, but his retirement had The Worm wanting to find a new home.

He was traded to San Antonio in 1993 as part of a four-player deal that forced Sean Elliott to leave the Spurs. The franchise was looking to get over the hump with David Robinson after four straight playoff appearances, but failing to get beyond the second round.

Rodman’s production was fantastic, but everything else did not go as planned. He was suspended for head-butting John Stockton and Stacey King, refused to leave games after being ejected, clashed with coaches and management, dated Madonna, was injured in a motorcycle accident, and even got suspended during the 1995 playoffs for taking his shoes off during a timeout.

The San Antonio Spurs lost to the Houston Rockets in the 1995 Western Conference Finals, which led to Rodman criticizing head coach Bob Hill and general manager Gregg Popovich. It was clear they needed to move on, so Dennis Rodman was traded to the Bulls for Will Perdue.

The Worm won three more championships with Michael Jordan in Chicago, but the Spurs needed to let go of Rodman because of all the drama surrounding the team. Trading the future Hall of Famer was no easy decision, but San Antonio held on too long as his value plummeted.