Funny how we all assumed Kawhi Leonard created load management.

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During episodes three and four of The Last Dance, it was revealed that former Chicago Bulls coach Phil Jackson granted Rodman permission to go to Las Vegas for two days in the middle of the 1997-98 season.

Rodman was carrying a lot of the load along with Michael Jordan while Scottie Pippen was out for the first three months of the season due to a foot injury. Jackson was cool with the time off.


Jordan wasn’t a fan of this and believed if anyone on the team deserved a vacation it was him.

Current Utah Jazz All-Star Donovan Mitchell believes load management was created at that moment.

Can’t deny it, Mitchell has a point. Rodman disappeared for a few days and came back to the Bulls organization refreshed and focused en route on winner the last of Bulls’ sixth NBA championship.

“Dennis held us together when Scottie was out,” Jackson said. “He had to really focus to make us as competitive as we were.”

In today’s NBA culture it’s normal to take some downtime for yourself. Rodman was just extra when he did it back in 98.