WASHINGTON, Feb. 21 (UPI) -- Michael Jordan became the first 40-year-old to reach the 40-point plateau Friday night, producing 43 to lead the Washington Wizards to an 89-86 victory over the New Jersey Nets.
The third-leading scorer in NBA history, Jordan fell two points shy of his season high, set on February 1 -- just two weeks before his 40th birthday. He made 18 of 30 shots from the floor, seven of eight free throws and grabbed 10 rebounds.
Despite Jordan's dominance, the Nets had an 86-84 lead after Aaron Williams hit a hook shot with 70 seconds left.
After Washington's Christian Laettner made one of two free throws, Jordan drove past Richard Jefferson for a layup to give the Wizards the lead for good with 34 seconds left.
It was the first basket in nearly 10 minutes for Jordan, who missed his previous five shots.
Jefferson, who scored 25 points, missed a three-pointer at the buzzer as New Jersey lost for the fourth time in its last five road games.