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Michael Jordan described his 64-point game against Shaquille O'Neal as "wasted energy"

Michael Jordan-Shaquille O'Neal

Michael Jordan-Shaquille O'Neal

On January 16, 1993, the Chicago Bulls faced the Orlando Magic four days after beating them 122-106 on the road. Michael Jordan, who struggled in the first game -- 23 points on 9-for-22 from the floor -- was determined to bounce back and lead his team to back-to-back victories. And he did. To some extent.

The Bulls lose in OT

The Bulls had a six-point lead with 44 seconds left in regulation. However, the Magic outscored them 7-1, forcing overtime at Chicago Stadium. During the span, MJ committed a turnover with 33 seconds left; Horace Grant missed two shots from the charity stripe, and Shaquille O'Neal was allowed to get an offensive rebound following Nick Anderson's missed free throw. O'Neal dunked the ball and cut the Bulls lead down to two with only 14 seconds left on the clock.

Chicago was even up by three with only six seconds remaining. But Anderson, a hometown kid, knocked down a wide-open three to send the game into overtime where the Magic would eventually steal the game and beat the defending champs 128-124.

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"If I had the chance to do it all over again, I would have taken the foul instead of passing to the bigger guy," said Jordan, frustrated about his turnover in regulation. And rightly so -- the end result ruined what would've been an all-time great performance capped off with a win.

MJ on dropping 64: "It's wasted energy"

Michael attempted career-high 49 field goals and converted a career-high 27 -- previous career highs were 43 FGAs and 24 FGMs. He was 9-for-11 from the charity stripe, and 1-for-5 from three, for a total of 64 points -- to this day the second-best scoring game of his career. Michael added six rebounds, one assist, and five steals, but he only cared about the end result.

The points don't make a difference to me. It's just wasted energy in a sense because we didn't finish the game the way we should have. We just gave away the game. We played good enough, but we just made some dumb plays. When you blow a six-point lead in less than a minute, there is something wrong with that. Getting 64 points doesn't mean anything when you lose.

Michael Jordan, Chicago Tribune

One of the reasons MJ wanted to make a statement in this game was Shaquille O'Neal -- rookie playing for the Magic. He put up a monster double-double; 29 points, and 24 rebounds, after putting up 19 and 11 in a loss four days earlier. All five Magic starters scored in double digits, with Scott Skiles leading the way with 31 points and 11 assists. Scottie Pippen added 17 for the Bulls, but their efforts, led by a historic night from No.23, proved to be in vain.

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