Bulls charge to a record start

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CHICAGO -- Michael Jordan scored 27 points over three quarters and Scottie Pippen finished one point shy of a triple-double as the Chicago Bulls posted a 104-92 victory over the Boston Celtics.

Pippen totalled nine points, 11 assists and 12 rebounds as Chicago moved out to its best start in franchise history at 6-0, eclipsing last season's mark. Toni Kukoc added 21 points off the bench.

"I'm not sure if we could be as good as last year," Bulls center Bill Wennington said. "But I know this team likes to win and hates to lose. The way we go at it every day in practice leads me to think if we were healthy we would have a great year."

Todd Day tallied 20 points and Frank Brickowski and Dino Radja each added 12 for the Celtics, who have dropped the last nine meetings with Chicago since a double-overtime win in April 1994.

"The Bulls are such a good team, it almost seems like they can turn it on and off whenever they want to," Day said. "We have a young group of guys. As the season moves on, we are going to get better."

Radja scored 10 points and Brickowski had eight as Boston stormed out to a 30-23 lead after 12 minutes. The Celtics increased the lead to 43-33 with 5:53 left in the second quarter before Randy Brown scored five points and Jordan four during a 19-3 run that gave the Bulls a 52-46 lead with 41.6 seconds remaining.

The Bulls led by four at the half, but trailed 55-54 two minutes into the third period. Jordan then had half the points in a 16-4 spurt that gave Chicago the lead for good at 70-59 with 4:28 to play in the quarter.

A jumper by Dickie Simpkins 15 seconds into the fourth gave Chicago its biggest lead at 84-68 and the closest Boston would get thereafter is eight points.

"I thought we came out kind of sluggish tonight," Jordan said. "It seemed to take us until the second quarter to get our rhythm going. Scottie couldn't find the basket -- it just wouldn't drop for him -- but he did a lot of other good things. Right now our bench guys are playing good and picking us up."

Dennis Rodman pulled down 10 boards for the Bulls, who were outrebounded 46-41. The team made just three of 14 from 3-point range (21 percent) and 15 of 25 free throws (60 percent).

"That's why they are the world champions," Boston coach M.L. Carr said of the Bulls. "They can come out and look lousy for a couple of quarters and still find some way to beat you.

"They had a poor shooting night and we were in position to upset them. But when you have Pippen, Jordan, Rodman -- even Kukoc off the bench -- they are tough to beat."

Rick Fox added 11 points and nine rebounds and Eric Williams and David Wesley had 10 points apiece for Boston, which shot 44 percent (34 for 78) from the floor and committed 26 turnovers.

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