April 23, 2021

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Dennis Rodman says he’s praying for ailing Kim Jong Un: ‘I hope it’s just a rumor’


Reports that North Korean leader Kim Jong Un may have suffered a health setback after recent surgery have former NBA star Dennis Rodman worried, according to a report.

“I hope it’s just a rumor that Marshal Kim Jong Un is sick,” the former Detroit Pistons and Chicago Bulls player told TMZ Sports. “Hopefully I will find out more soon.”

Kim has long been a fan of the NBA and its players, with Rodman – who played in the league from 1986 to 2000 before joining overseas teams – being a particular favorite.

TOP US GENERAL SAYS KIM JONG UN LIKELY ‘IN FULL CONTROL’ OF NORTH KOREA, AMID REPORTS OF FAILING HEALTH

Rodman, 58, has visited Kim in North Korea several times and has acted as something of an unofficial ambassador between the Asian nation and the U.S.

“There is still so much work we have to do between both the USA and DPRK,” Rodman told TMZ, using the abbreviation for North Korea. “If he is not feeling well, I am praying for his speedy recovery, so that both my friends [President Trump & Marshal Kim] can continue towards a peaceful success.”

“If he is not feeling well, I am praying for his speedy recovery, so that both my friends [President Trump & Marshal Kim] can continue towards a peaceful success.”

— Dennis Rodman

On Wednesday, the vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff said the Pentagon had not yet received any intelligence suggesting Kim was no longer North Korea’s ruler.

“I assume Kim Jong Un is still in full control of the Korean nuclear force and the Korean military forces,” Gen. John Hyten told reporters.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and former NBA star Dennis Rodman share a laugh during Rodman's visit to North Korea in 2013.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and former NBA star Dennis Rodman share a laugh during Rodman’s visit to North Korea in 2013.

The Daily NK — an online news periodical based in Seoul that is run mostly by North Korean defectors — has reported that Kim, 36, was recovering from his April 12 surgery at a villa. The report, translated from Korean to English, said Kim has been in bad health because of “heavy smoking, obesity and overwork.”

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Last September, Rodman – who also played for the San Antonio Spurs, Los Angeles Lakers and Dallas Mavericks – made a bold prediction during an appearance on “Fox & Friends,” saying he expected Kim to visit the U.S. “in 18 to 24 months.”

“I guarantee it,” Rodman said at the time.

Rodman has frequently praised President Trump over his dealings with Kim, saying the president has done “a great job” in trying to resolve differences between the U.S. and North Korea.

Fox News’ Brooke Singman and Ryan Gaydos contributed to this story.



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