Basketball legend Michael Jordan's National Basketball Association career has ended with a defeat for his team, but a personal victory, nevertheless, because of his immense popularity and impressive record.

Jordan's Washington Wizards lost to the Philadelphia 76ers Wednesday, 107-87.

But the Philadelphia crowd gave Jordan a two-and-a-half minute standing ovation when he was introduced before the game, then gave him a three-minute standing ovation when he left the game for the final time with two minutes left in regulation.

The 40-year-old Jordan previously retired in 1993 and 1999, only to return. But he has said in recent weeks this would be his final run as a player. Jordan says he would like to work as an NBA executive when he retires.

Jordan led the Chicago Bulls to six NBA championships in the 1990's, and his career scoring average of 30.1 points is the highest in league history.

Jordan's personality, high-flying dunks and acrobatic play earned him the nickname "Air," as well as made him one of the most marketable athletes ever, with endorsement deals for Nike and Gatorade, among other products.