Jordan falls short for Bulls

Basketball

Michael Jordan, the top scorer for the Chicago Bulls in their 78-73 defeat by Utah Jazz which levelled the NBA Finals in the fourth game on Sunday, was told that he had looked mortal.

"Mortal in the sense that we lost or mortal in the sense that I didn't score 60 points?'' Jordan, who scored only 22 points, asked.

"There's different ways you can look at it, the way my output was tonight. I didn't really score what you're accustomed to seeing, my average of 31, 32 or 33 or whatever."

The nine-times scoring champion, looking for his fifth NBA title, scored just 10 points in the first three quarters, then got 12 in the fourth.

"I felt I was able to find the rhythm. You were probably happy when I was stroking it pretty good," he said, mildly making fun of his questioner. In the fourth quarter, however, he also committed two of his three turnovers.

"In terms of the outcome of the game, I made a couple of [bad] passes, I missed a couple of shots and I guess I looked like a mortal person at the time."

Jordan, whose basket in the last seconds won the first game for the Bulls, said he knew that for some people the games turn into "expectations of what Michael Jordan does, and make people like you realise that there's going to be games where I can't live up to the fantasy or the hype that people have built Michael Jordan to be.

"And I'm accustomed to living with that. I'd rather make it exciting and score 60 points and win - so that you feel happy - but there's going to be nights when I can't do that.

"And I have to accept that and look at it as a motivational situation, that next game I hope I can please you."

Smiling as the roomful of reporters laughed, Jordan added: "If it doesn't happen, then I've got to keep looking further in the future."

John Stockton had a hand in 10 of Utah's last 12 points - as Chicago scored just two - but his long gridiron football-style throw to Karl Malone, just inches out of reach of Jordan, will be best remembered.

When Malone, the main recipient of passes from the NBA's all-time assists leader, laid the ball in, it put the Jazz ahead with 45 seconds to go.

"I think Stock knew it had to be the perfect pass," Malone said. "The pass he made is probably one you'll never forget in basketball," John Sloan, the Utah coach, said.

"Because I don't know how he made it and got it past [Jordan] the way he did, and Karl being able to catch it. They've done a lot of that over their careers, but it's one of those things that came at the right time."

"It was a beautiful pass," veteran bench man Antoine Carr said. "It was kind of reminiscent of quarterbacks. Of course, the catch was great also."

Jordan said he had been caught off stride, and never believed he could get to the ball - but he was a fingertip away.

Stockton wound up with 17 points, second on the team to Malone's 23. He shot six-for-11 from the field including two-of-three from three-point range.

Suggested Topics
Voices
Stephanie first after her public appearance as a woman at Rad Fest 2014
voices

Arts and Entertainment
Banksy's 'The Girl with the Pierced Eardrum' in Bristol
art'Girl with the Pierced Eardrum' followed hoax reports artist had been arrested and unveiled
Voices
Oscar Pistorius is led out of court in Pretoria. Pistorius received a five-year prison sentence for culpable homicide by judge Thokozile Masipais for the killing of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp
voicesThokozile Masipa simply had no choice but to jail the athlete
Life and Style
tech

Board creates magnetic field to achieve lift

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
Russell Brand at an anti-austerity march in June
peopleActor and comedian says 'there's no point doing it if you're not'
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
James Blunt's debut album Back to Bedlam shot him to fame in 2004
music

Singer says the track was 'force-fed down people's throats'

News
news

Endangered species spotted in a creek in the Qinling mountains

Life and Style
tech

Company says data is only collected under 'temporary' identities that are discarded every 15 minutes

News
peopleJust weeks after he created dress for Alamuddin-Clooney wedding
Life and Style
A street vendor in Mexico City sells Dorilocos, which are topped with carrot, jimaca, cucumber, peanuts, pork rinds, spices and hot sauce
food + drink

Trend which requires crisps, a fork and a strong stomach is sweeping Mexico's streets

Arts and Entertainment
George Lucas poses with a group of Star Wars-inspired Disney characters at Disney's Hollywood Studios in 2010
films

George Lucas criticises the major Hollywood film studios

Life and Style
health

Some experiencing postnatal depression don't realise there is a problem. What can be done?

Arts and Entertainment
Gotham is coming to UK shores this autumn
tvGotham, episode 2, review
News
i100
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Senior Pensions Administrator

£23000 - £26000 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Our client is curr...

Nursery Nurse

Negotiable: Randstad Education Manchester: I am currently recruiting level 3 n...

Are you a Teacher interested in Special Needs?

£110 - £150 per day: Randstad Education Preston: Are you a qualified Teacher w...

**ESOL**

£60 - £70 per day: Randstad Education Preston: The Job:* The Tutor will prepar...

Day In a Page

Two super-sized ships have cruised into British waters, but how big can these behemoths get?

Super-sized ships: How big can they get?

Two of the largest vessels in the world cruised into UK waters last week
British doctors on brink of 'cure' for paralysis with spinal cord treatment

British doctors on brink of cure for paralysis

Sufferers can now be offered the possibility of cure thanks to a revolutionary implant of regenerative cells
Let's talk about loss

We need to talk about loss

Secrecy and silence surround stillbirth
Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

Women may be better suited to space travel than men are
Oscar Pistorius sentencing: The athlete's wealth and notoriety have provoked a long overdue debate on South African prisons

'They poured water on, then electrified me...'

If Oscar Pistorius is sent to jail, his experience will not be that of other inmates
James Wharton: The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

Life after the Army has brought new battles for the LGBT activist James Wharton
Ebola in the US: Panic over the virus threatens to infect President Obama's midterms

Panic over Ebola threatens to infect the midterms

Just one person has died, yet November's elections may be affected by what Republicans call 'Obama's Katrina', says Rupert Cornwell
Premier League coaches join the RSC to swap the tricks of their trades

Darling, you were fabulous! But offside...

Premier League coaches are joining the RSC to learn acting skills, and in turn they will teach its actors to play football. Nick Clark finds out why
How to dress with authority: Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear

How to dress with authority

Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear
New book on Joy Division's Ian Curtis sheds new light on the life of the late singer

New book on Ian Curtis sheds fresh light on the life of the late singer

'Joy Division were making art... Ian was for real' says author Jon Savage
Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

The Bafta-winner talks Hollywood, being branded a psycho, and how Barbra Streisand is his true inspiration
Tim Minchin, interview: The musician, comedian and world's favourite ginger is on scorching form

Tim Minchin interview

For a no-holds-barred comedian who is scathing about woolly thinking and oppressive religiosity, he is surprisingly gentle in person
Boris Johnson's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Boris's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Many of us Brits still disapprove of conspicuous consumption – it's the way we were raised, says DJ Taylor
Ash frontman Tim Wheeler reveals how he came to terms with his father's dementia

Tim Wheeler: Alzheimer's, memories and my dad

Wheeler's dad suffered from Alzheimer's for three years. When he died, there was only one way the Ash frontman knew how to respond: with a heartfelt solo album