Former NBA star Dennis Rodman continued his quest in North Korea Thursday in an attempt to improve U.S. relations with unpredictable North Korean Supreme Leader Kim Jong Un, and he took a special gift with him to accomplish that goal.
The 56-year-old five-time NBA champion delivered President Donald Trump’s book, “The Art of the Deal,” to North Korean Sports Minister Kim Il Guk, and according to The Associated Press, the gift was intended for Kim Jong Un. Rodman previously told reporters that his visit was not on behalf of the Trump administration but that he was trying to open a door for the two countries.
In addition to Trump’s book, Rodman also brought the North Korean leader a copy of “Where’s Waldo,” a mermaid puzzle, two sets of soap, and two autographed jerseys.
“In the past, our respected supreme leader met you several times and he used his precious time to watch the basketball match with the players you brought here. In the past, he met you, so our people all know you well,” Kim Il Guk said to Rodman. “And also we feel that you are an old friend.”
Rodman’s friendship with Kim dates back to 2013, when he first visited Pyongyang with the Harlem Globetrotters. After meeting the North Korean dictator at a basketball game, Rodman called him a “friend for life” and an “awesome guy.”
Rodman was asked by reporters Tuesday if he had spoken to Trump about his visit to North Korea.
“Well, I’m pretty sure he’s pretty much happy with the fact that I’m over here trying to accomplish something that we both need,” he answered.