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Michael, let that be your Finals say

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Sometimes, there is just nothing more to say.

For Michael Jordan, that time came in the NBA Finals, in the last 40 seconds of Game 6, when he refused to be denied a sixth championship, when he simply refused to lose.Jordan is one of a kind, a remarkable player with the unique ability to impose his will on games. There are no words for him, no way to capture his elegance and Delan. Webster's hasn't yet come up with anything that fits. He is simply the best basketball player of his time, maybe of all time.

And now it is time to move on.

Swept up in the emotion of the moment after taking over the game in the last minute to defeat Utah for the title last week, Jordan talked about coming back next year and doing it one more time.

What for? What is there left to prove? Those last 40 seconds against the Jazz - score a quick basket to make it a one-point game, steal the ball to give yourself a chance to win, run down the clock and then nail the deciding basket - were quintessential Jordan.

He plays this game with a passion and time and again it finishes like a mathematical problem where the solution includes an exclamation.

QED: That which was to be proved.

Jordan has proved it over and over again. Perhaps Bulls coach Phil Jackson, who always looks like he knows something the rest of us don't, put it best when he was asked about Jordan's uncanny ability to take over games, to inflict his will on the outcome.

"He is a hero," Jackson said. "How many times does he have to show us that?"

There is no doubt that Jordan could come back and do this again - with or without Jackson, who has Montana wilderness to explore, and with or without Scottie Pippen, who has free agent fortunes to explore.

Why is that necessary, though? Why not leave with the memory of those fabulous final 40 seconds, with his arm extended on the follow through for his game-winning, series-winning shot? What else is necessary?

There's a lot to be said about leaving on top. That's what Jim Brown, Rocky Marciano and Ted Williams did.

Brown won his eighth NFL rushing championship in 1965 and then walked away, happy to get on with the rest of his life. Marciano won 49 fights without a loss and left it at that, probably saving a lot of unnecessary punishment for other heavyweights. Williams hit a home run in his last at-bat in Fenway Park and never took another swing.

In each case, there was nothing else to be said, nothing more to prove. That is the way to be remembered, going out with something still left in the tank.

Contrast that with Muhammad Ali's last fight, when he dressed in a cramped trailer after losing to Trevor Berbick in some makeshift promotion in the Bahamas that no U.S. boxing commission would license.

Or with Willie Mays, a sad sight tripping over his own feet in center field in the spotlight of the World Series, a stage he once dominated.

Let the other Bulls do what they want. Let Jordan walk away a winner, his arm extended in the air on that last shot, secure in the knowledge that he left when he still had something left.