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Archive for Thursday, April 4, 2002

Jordan-less Wizards fall

April 4, 2002

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— The Milwaukee Bucks might be the only ones glad to see Michael Jordan's season end early.

"I was happy he wasn't playing tonight," Glenn Robinson said after tying his season high with 38 points as the free-falling Bucks beat the Washington Wizards 105-90 Wednesday night, hours after Jordan went on the disabled list with a swollen right knee.

"His court presence changes the game with his teammates and with the officials," Robinson said. "When Mike's got the ball, the referees call it by the book. When he's not on the court, they might not get some of the calls that they get when he's out there. And that's just because he's a respected player and he's a smart player and he stays on the officials."

Jordan had scored 34 points in just 26 minutes the last time these teams met, a 107-98 Wizards victory on March 29.

It was his best post-return performance since Jordan returned from arthroscopic surgery two weeks ago.

"Regardless with or without Jordan, they beat us pretty good down there," Robinson said. "We wanted to come back and get revenge."

Jordan rushed his rehabilitation from the arthroscopic surgery Feb. 27 that repaired torn cartilage in the knee. He missed just 12 games and was a reserve in all seven games after he came back.

But he played a career-low 12 minutes and scored a career-low two points in Tuesday night's 113-93 loss to the Los Angeles Lakers. Jordan traveled to Milwaukee after the game but flew home Wednesday after deciding he couldn't play any longer on the balky knee.

The Wizards' hopes of a playoff berth might have gone down with Jordan. And some of his teammates wonder if Jordan has played his last NBA game.

"I would love to have him back," Christian Laettner said. "But he has to do whatever his knees tell him."

Nets 94, Lakers 92

East Rutherford, N.J. Â After blowing an early 19-point lead and falling behind by eight in the fourth quarter, New Jersey scored 16 of the game's final 22 points to defeat the Lakers. Los Angeles played without Shaquille O'Neal, a last-minute scratch because of a sprained right wrist. Kobe Bryant scored 33 points.

Kings 107, Pistons 86

Auburn Hills, Mich. Â Chris Webber seven rebounds and two blocks for Sacramento. Before the game, he refused to address allegations that he got $280,000 from a booster while he was a high school and college star in Michigan.

Hornets 97, Heat 90

Charlotte, N.C. Â Baron Davis and Jamal Mashburn scored 22 points each, and all five of Charlotte's starters reached double figures against Miami.

Raptors 117, Bulls 104

Toronto  Morris Peterson scored 26 points and Antonio Davis 25 as Toronto won its sixth straight game without Vince Carter. Davis added 13 rebounds and four assists for the Raptors.

Jazz 99, Clippers 87

Salt Lake City  Karl Malone had 24 points, eight rebounds and seven assists, and John Stockton added 11 points and nine assists for Utah.

76ers 89, Suns 83, OT

Philadelphia  Aaron McKie tied the game at the end of regulation time, then scored eight of his 22 points in overtime to lead Philadelphia. Dikembe Mutombo had 16 points, and Matt Harpring 11 points and a career-high 13 rebounds.

Timberwolves 92, Grizzlies 81

Minneapolis  Chauncey Billups had 26 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists to lead Minnesota over Memphis, securing a playoff spot for the Timberwolves for the sixth straight season.

Spurs 90, SuperSonics 88

San Antonio  Tony Parker connected on his only basket of the game, a 16-foot jump shot with 7.1 seconds to play, giving San Antonio the victory.

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