As of 670 The Score’s 20th Anniversary on January 3rd, the station has begun to reveal (in chronological order) the Top 100 Chicago Sports Stories that have occurred since they first went on the air 20 years ago. Once all 100 of these “flashbacks” have been revealed, fans will be able to vote for which stories they believe are the most significant in the 20 year history of The Score. To see all of the Flashbacks that The Score has posted so far, please visit 670 The Score’s 20th Anniversary page.

January 19, 2002 – Michael Jordan returns to Chicago with Wizards

Michael Jordan led the Bulls to six championships during his time in Chicago, but on Jan. 19, 2002, he returned to the United Center with an entirely different goal.

When Jordan retired from basketball after the 1997-98 season, he became a part owner of the Washington Wizards. That didn’t last long, though, as Jordan had an itch to return to the NBA.

When he returned, he signed a contract with the Wizards, and on a cold day in January, he came back to Chicago to face the team where he made his name.

This was most Bulls fan’s worst nightmare — facing the player they loved in the city they loved.

The Wizards ultimately defeated the Bulls, 77-69, but Jordan struggled, committing a career-high nine turnovers in 41 minutes of playing time. He scored just 16 points.

“I have too many memories,” Jordan said after the game. “It’s important for me not to come back and try to live up to that situation because that’s tough. I may have a good game maybe the next time I come here.

“But to try to compare the two eras or the two situations, it’s very, very tough.”

Before the start of the game, fans at the United Center gave Jordan a resounding, three-minuting standing ovation, nearly bringing the six-time NBA Finals MVP to tears.

“When the crowd started that whole thing, it made it tough for me to play,” Jordan said. “I had a tough time playing against Chicago. It’s like playing a relative, in a sense. It’s not as intense, you’re not quite as motivated.”

The Score will continue to release a new Flashback each weekday until they reach 100. Check back tomorrow for a new one, or check out all of the previous Flashbacks: 670 The Score’s 20th Anniversary »