Massachusetts Daily Collegian

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

Massachusetts Daily Collegian

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

Massachusetts Daily Collegian

Celtics suffer worst loss in franchise history

WASHINGTON (AP) – Michael Jordan and the Washington Wizards handed the Boston Celtics their worst defeat in franchise history.

Shaking off a rusty performance that made him look his age the night before, Jordan scored 21 points in 22 minutes as the Wizards beat the Celtics 114-69 Thursday night.

The 45-point loss topped Boston’s previous worst of 42 points, a 128-84 loss at Portland on Jan. 4, 1977. It was the third-biggest margin of victory in Wizards history.

Jordan capped the first half with a flourish. He made his second free throw, raced to his right to steal the inbounds pass, pumped and made a 21-foot jump shot – complete with a little cancan kick – just before the halftime buzzer. He left the court with a big smile to thunderous applause.

In the second half, he helped Washington rub it in.

Jordan scored just eight points and missed a dunk in the second half of Wednesday’s season-opening loss at Toronto, but he passed that tally in the second half alone against the Celtics. The 39-year-old guard shot 8-of-15 from the field and 5-of-5 from the free-throw line. He had four rebounds and five assists.

Kwame Brown, a disappointment as the No. 1 overall pick in the draft a year ago, had his second solid game in a row. He set the defensive tone with four blocks in the first quarter and finished with 20 points, six rebounds and six blocks.

The Celtics shot just 30 percent one night after they lost their opener at home to Chicago. Antoine Walker scored 12 points and was just 5-for-16 from the field, and Paul Pierce scored 12 points and was 3-for-16. Walker is 10-for-39 in two games.

The Wizards missed their first six shots and trailed by seven early, but it was the Celtics who couldn’t hit a basket most of the game. After Brown’s early dominance inside, Boston chucked long ones from outside and watched them clank off the iron.

Jordan entered midway through the first quarter and tied it with a 15-foot jumper. Later, he showed his still has some acceleration, blowing past Tony Delk on the right wing and drawing a foul as he approached the basket.

Jordan’s four-point sequence at the end of the half put the Wizards ahead 58-40. The Celtics never threatened in the second half, when several of the big moments belonged to Brown.

The 20-year-old forward made a three-point play, dunked off a feed from Jordan and had a stellar sequence in which he blocked Walker at one end and made a jumper at the other to put the Wizards ahead by 20.

Jordan had one of his old flourishes at the end of the third quarter, making three straight tough jumpers in a 13-4 run. When Jordan was called for a foul during the run, he vehemently put up an argument that nearly drew a technical – even though the Wizards were leading by 27.

Notes: Brendan Haywood started at center for the Wizards, one night after playing just four minutes in the opener. … A moment of silence was held before the game for Run-DMC rapper Jam Master Jay, who was shot to death in New York on Wednesday. Run-DMC had been scheduled to perform at halftime. … With the game decided, the crowd broke in chants of “We want Juan!” early in the fourth quarter. Juan Dixon, a first-round draft pick from Maryland, entered to a standing ovation with 6:29 remaining. He scored six points.

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