WASHINGTON, Dec. 31 (Ticker) -- Michael Jordan
followed up a 51-point performance by scoring 45 as the Washington Wizards snapped the New Jersey Nets' three-game winning streak with a 98-76 rout.
Jordan was 16-of-32 from the field, adding 10 rebounds and seven assists just two days after setting a franchise scoring record and becoming the NBA's oldest player to score 50 points in a game.
"My knees are feeling good," Jordan said. "I am feeling a lot better in terms of health, and once I get in my rhythm I can get it going. So I think that will keep all of those old player conversations down a little bit."
During a six-minute stretch bridging the middle periods, Jordan scored 22 straight points for the Wizards, outscoring the Nets 22-13 by himself. He set the NBA record with 23 consecutive points for the Chicago Bulls on a 61-point night against Atlanta on April 16, 1987.
Michael Jordan's scoring spree was impressive enough, but he also outscored the Nets by 13 during that time.
Mitchell Layton /NBAE/Getty Images
"I think that it was right at the time that Kenyon Martin
told me he had a back problem and that he was wearing a back brace," Jordan said. "I don't think he wanted to tell me that. I just started attacking from that point on."
"He had it going for a little bit," Martin said. "He hit one of those stretches where he had it going. I contested a lot of them. On a couple of them, he gave me a couple nice moves, but I contested the shots. He just knocked them down."
added 12 points and 14 rebounds for Washington, which extended its home winning streak to five games.
After Lucious Harris'
three-point play cut the Nets' deficit to 74-65 in the opening minute of the fourth quarter, Jones scored on a tip-in and Washington led by double digits thereafter.
Martin and Keith Van Horn
each had 16 points for New Jersey, which got 10 and 11 assists from Jason Kidd.
New Jersey shot just 39 percent (29-of-75) and was 1-of-11 from 3-point range.
"It was probably the worst game we've played offensively," Nets coach Byron Scott said. "We just didn't execute at all. We got two guys running on breaks, and that's one that's pushing it, Jason, and Kerry (Kittles)
is running. Everybody else is kind of walking and jogging."
Washington did not shoot much better at 42 percent (37-of-88), but the Wizards manhandled the Nets on the boards with a 62-30 rebounding advantage.
"Sixty-two to 30," Scott said. "There's no way in the world you can win a basketball game, not in the NBA, not in high school. You get outrebounded, 62-30, that's pitiful, that's ridiculous. That's embarrassing to get beat that bad on the boards."
Washington took advantage of its rebounding prowess, scoring 26 second-chance points to the Nets' six.
The Nets have lost 23 straight road games against Jordan's teams, dating to a victory over Chicago on March 3, 1985 during his rookie season.
"I think he is more of a surgeon now," Washington coach Doug Collins said. "I think before he just beat you with just sheer will, skill and energy. Now he slices you. He finds out where to attack and he just reads it."
"He was good, there's no doubt about it. He was good, but I don't think M.J. is why we lost the game. We got a royal (butt-kicking) on the boards," Scott said. "It was a bunch of men over there with a bunch of boys on this side, basically. They just beat the crap out of us and did whatever they wanted to."