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Dennis Rodman gives North Korean leader birthday basketball game

NORTH KOREA   --  Dennis Rodman's trip to North Korea is sparking considerable political fireworks.
He says the exhibition game between former NBA players and a team of North Koreans is a way to bridge the divide.

But as ABC News' Karen Travers explains, many are questioning the move.
It was planned as a friendly game of hoopsformer NBA players versus a team of North Koreans.

Dennis Rodman says he's just a basketball player but by organizing this trip to Pyongyang, he's stirred up a full court controversy.

Happy birthday
That's Rodman singing Happy Birthday to North Korean leader Kim Jong Un before the game.  Rodman said it's basketball diplomacy - and the game was a
 birthday gift.

I love the guy, the guy is my friend, forever and ever and ever.
That friend is considered one of the world's most brutal dictators. The North Korean leader recently ordered the execution of his own uncle and he's
held captive since May a Korean-American missionary, Kenneth Bae.

Yesterday Rodman grew angry when cnn pressed him on why he hasn't used his relationship with Kim to help Bae.

The one thing about politics, Kenneth Bae did one thing, if you understand -- I got it guys, if you understand what Kenneth Bae did.  Do
you understand what he did?

Rodman's struck up a surprising relationship with the reclusive North Korean leader, who's largely unknown to the rest of the world.

The legendary NBA bad boy is the most high-profile American to meet with Kim since he took power two years ago.

The other former pros said they came on the trip to try and make a connection between the US and North Korea.

I questioned whether we were doing the right thing because of the media scrutiny. It was important to stand strong, and follow up and follow through, and, it all just worked out.

The White House said it would not have approved the trip if it had any say - but it was not contacted by Dennis Rodman.