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With future in question, M.J. leads Bulls

SHARE With future in question, M.J. leads Bulls

Only Michael Jordan can answer whether he will stay with the Chicago Bulls next season. There's no question, though, about what he means to them now.

Jordan shook loose and hit a short jumper with 5.4 seconds left Sunday, giving the Bulls a 102-100 victory over the Toronto Raptors.Jordan finished with 33 points. The win improved Chicago to 51-17, the best record in the league.

"I might have shuffled my feet a little bit, but I got a good look," Jordan said. "I never get tired of taking those shots."

Earlier in the day, the New York Times reported at least three of Jordan's teammates claim his future with the Bulls depends more on the team keeping Scottie Pip-pen than it does on bringing back coach Phil Jackson.

Jackson has said he plans to leave Chicago after this season, and team management has done nothing to change his mind. Jordan has said he would only play for Jackson, and the NBA's No. 1 player repeated that stance after the win at Toronto.

The Bulls led by 12 with six minutes left before Toronto rallied to tie it.

Jordan drove past Marcus Camby at the top of the key and made his go-ahead basket. Toronto's Chauncey Billups missed a desperation 3-pointer from near halfcourt.

Scottie Pippen had 33 points and Dennis Rodman had 18 rebounds for Chicago. John Wallace had 26 points for the Raptors.

WIZARDS 102, NETS 100, OT: Washington's Chris Webber made a three-point play with 27.6 seconds left in overtime, then gave the choke sign as he walked off New Jersey's home court.

The Wizards moved one-half game ahead of the Nets for the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.

Webber later explained his gesture was not intended for the Nets, but that it was meant for several of his friends - who happen to be New Jersey fans - sitting behind the basket.

Keith Van Horn scored 29 points, including 15 of the final 19 for the Nets, who have lost 10 of 12.

LAKERS 96, KINGS 93: Shaquille O'Neal had 33 points and 13 rebounds and Kobe Bryant hit four foul shots in the last 34 seconds to lift Los Angeles. Sacramento lost its seventh in a row.

Kings star Mitch Richmond, the fourth-leading scorer in the NBA, missed his first game of the season because of a sore right knee. He's questionable for tonight's game at Seattle.

PISTONS 105, HAWKS 98: Grant Hill's 24 points and 11 assists helped host Detroit defeat Atlanta.

Joe Dumars added 16 points, including nine in a fourth-quarter burst. Don Reid blocked four shots, two of them dunk attempts by Dikembe Mutombo.

HEAT 112, TRAIL BLAZERS 80: Mark Strickland scored a career-high 23 points off the bench on 11-of-14 shooting and Miami won at home.

Alonzo Mourning scored 22 points and Tim Hardaway had 20 points and 13 assists as the Heat won their fourth straight game.

CELTICS 108, 76ERS 90: Boston stopped its season-high six-game losing streak behind Dana Barros' 27 points, nine assists and nine rebounds.

Antoine Walker added 25 points and 10 rebounds for the host Celt-ics.

MAGIC 92, WARRIORS 83: Reserve Derek Strong had 18 points and 12 rebounds as Orlando sent visiting Golden State to its sixth straight loss.

Bo Outlaw scored 22 for the Magic, tied with Washington for the Eastern Conference's final playoff spot.

PACERS 96, BUCKS 94, OT: Reggie Miller scored 32 points and Indiana handed host Milwaukee its ninth straight defeat.

Rik Smits had 15 points and seven rebounds, including a late three-point play for the Pacers.

Ray Allen had 25 points for the Bucks, who have lost 12 of 13.

SPURS 93, SUNS 83: Tim Duncan's 26 points and 21 rebounds sent host San Antonio past Phoe-nix.

David Robinson added 17 points and 16 rebounds for the Spurs. The Suns had been 3-0 against San Antonio this season.

Rex Chapman scored 30 points for the Suns.