Retired basketball star Dennis Rodman has checked himself into an alcohol treatment program, his spokesman said.
The news comes just days after he returned to the United States from his fourth visit to North Korea.
During the trip, Mr Rodman sparked a row after over comments he made about an American citizen held prisoner there.
Retired US basketball star Dennis Rodman has apologised for comments he made about an imprisoned US missionary in North Korea, CNN said on Thursday, quoting a statement.
Rodman appeared to suggest in an interview that Kenneth Bae, rather than the North Korean authorities, was responsible for his incarceration.
"I want to apologise, I take full responsibility," Rodman was quoted as saying, adding that he had been drinking on a stressful day.
Dennis Rodman led an auditorium of North Koreans in singing "Happy Birthday" to their leader Kim Jong Un.
The celebration comes a day after the former U.S. basketball star sparked controversy by appearing to suggest a Korean-American was to blame for his captivity in the restrictive state.
Rodman brought a team of fellow former NBA stars to the North Korean capital, Pyongyang, to mark the birthday of leader Kim Jong Un with an exhibition game.
The birthday is believed to have been on Wednesday though that has not been confirmed.
Simon Cockerell, a tour guide who watched the game in Pyongyang, said the audience had stood and cheered Kim for up to six minutes when he appeared with his wife.
Former basketball player Dennis Rodman raised international outrage during his fourth trip to North Korea after he appeared to suggest that Korean-American missionary Kenneth Bae was to blame for his captivity in the restrictive country.
"If you understand what Kenneth Bae did ... Do you understand what he did in this country? Why is he held captive in this country?" Mr Rodman said in an interview with CNN, declining to respond to questions to clarify what he meant.
Former basketball player Dennis Rodman is in North Korea with a dozen former NBA colleagues to play an exhibition game. He said he hoped the trip would show people that the secretive state is "not that bad".
Mr Bae's sister, Terri Chung, said her family was "outraged" by his comments. "He is playing games with my brother's life," Chung said in a statement.
Asked about Rodman's comments, White House spokesman Jay Carney told reporters, "I'm not going to dignify that outburst with a response."
Dennis Rodman declared his love for the leader of North Korea Kim Jon-un today, according to the AFP news agency.
Asked whether he planned to raise issues of human rights on his trip, he reportedly said:
But I am not going to sit there and go 'Hey guy, you are doing the wrong thing. That is not the right way to do it. He is my friend first ... and I love him.
Retired US basketball player Dennis Rodman has compared his forthcoming visit to North Korea to the Olympics.
He was speaking to reporters at Beijing Capital International Airport as he prepared to leave for Pyongyang.
America's most flamboyant basketball player is making another trip to North Korea, and this time he's bringing some friends.Read the full story ›
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has sent South Korea a threatening message - by fax.
The dictator warned the south of a "merciless" strike "without notice" after anti-North Korea protests were held in Seoul, where photos of Kim were burned, according to ABC News.
Pyongyang's hostile message to the south via the dated technology comes as US basketball star Dennis Rodman - who also enjoyed acclaim in the 1990s - is set to visit the secretive country for a five day trip.
Former US basketball star Dennis Rodman has revealed he will train the North Korea basketball team for the Olympics.
Speaking at a press conference in New York, Mr Rodman revealed that he had been asked to coach North Korea's Olympic basketball team and had accepted.
The 52-year-old said he was going to "get the best players who used to play in the NBA" to play a game in North Korea.
Rodman added that he and the North Korean dictator, Kim Jong-un, planned on writing a book together - suggesting it would be a "bestseller".
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has become a father to a baby daughter, according to US basketball star Dennis Rodman.Read the full story ›