Regular Season Series (Game 1 of 4)

Series starts 11/11

Game 1: Tuesday, November 11th
Game 2: Saturday, December 27th
Game 3: Tuesday, March 9th
Game 4: Wednesday, March 31st

SuperSonics 89


Timberwolves 87

(4-4, 2-2 home)

7:00 PM ET, November 11, 2003

Target Center, Minneapolis, MN

1 2 3 4 T
SEA 25 25 11 2889
MIN 26 22 20 1987

Top Performers

Sea: R. Murray 29 Pts, 6 Reb, 8 Ast, 1 Stl

Min: K. Garnett 26 Pts, 13 Reb, 4 Ast, 1 Blk

Murray scores career-high 29

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) -- Ronald "Flip" Murray can no longer sneak up on people. Not with the ball in his hands on every important possession.

Murray hit a jumper over Latrell Sprewell at the buzzer, capping his career-high 29-point performance and lifting the Seattle SuperSonics over Minnesota 89-87 Tuesday night.

"I feel like I can get around anybody in the league," Murray said after scoring at least 20 points for the fifth straight game in place of the injured Ray Allen.

"It doesn't matter that no one in the arena knows who I am. They'll know who I am in time."

Sprewell made a 3-pointer with 14.5 seconds left, tying it at 87. After a timeout, Murray held the ball at the top of the key until about five seconds remained and then drove at Minnesota's top defender.

"I looked at his feet a little bit and they opened up and made me go left," Murray said. "So I went that way and got a shot off."

Murray's fadeaway shot from the left side bounced around the rim a couple of times and nearly rolled out before dropping in.

"I don't know how it went," said Sprewell, who had a hand in Murray's face. "It caught the front of the rim and trickled in."

"The shot he made on Spree, that's an NBA shot," Minnesota's Sam Cassell said. "Nothing else he do at that point."

Murray, who was one of the little-known names in the blockbuster trade that sent Gary Payton from Seattle to Milwaukee last season for Allen, also had six rebounds and eight assists, including two key passes down the stretch.

"It's not a surprise," Minnesota coach Flip Saunders said. "A lot of people may have never heard of him, but you better be aware because he's for real."

After scoring a total of 27 points in 11 games last season, Murray has had at least 24 four times this season.

Reserve Jerome James scored 14 points and Brent Barry added 13 to help the Sonics snap a nine-game losing streak in Minnesota. Rashard Lewis, the NBA's second-leading scorer, had just 11 points on 4-for-14 shooting.

"We deserve a break in this building," Seattle coach Nate McMillan said.

Kevin Garnett had 26 points and 13 rebounds for the Timberwolves. Sprewell scored 20 points and Cassell had 15 points and 13 assists, but Minnesota turned the ball over 20 times.

"We just didn't take care of the ball," Garnett said. "We had a sequence of two or three turnovers in a row and you can't do that."

The teams played even for most of the fourth before Murray went on his own 6-0 run to pull the Sonics within 80-78 with 3:40 left.

With Minnesota leading 82-80, Murray was fouled and made one of two free throws. He then stole the ball from Garnett and hit James for a dunk that gave the Sonics an 83-82 lead with 1:55 left. It was their first lead since early in the half.

Garnett had a chance to give Minnesota the lead again, but he missed two foul shots with 1:39 left.

James made two free throws, after a Murray pass, to make it 85-82. Mark Madsen had a dunk and Murray hit two more free throws to set up Sprewell's tying shot.

Game notes

Saunders said he expects injured forward Wally Szczerbiak (strained plantar fascia) to start practicing again next week. Hudson (sprained ankle) said he was "getting better," but did not know when he would return to practice. ... The Wolves are in the midst of a 10-game stretch in which they face eight teams that did not make the playoffs last season. ... James came into the game having missed his first four shot attempts of the season. ... This was the first of four road games in five nights for Seattle. ... Seattle shot 6-for-7 from the foul line in the first quarter and didn't take another free throw until 6:46 remained in the game. The Sonics finished 16-for-19 from the line.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


Team Stat Comparison

Points 89 87
FGM-FGA 33-73 (.452) 33-76 (.434)
3PM-3PA 7-20 (.350) 6-12 (.500)
FTM-FTA 16-19 (.842) 15-21 (.714)
Rebounds (Offensive-Total) 11-41 10-34
Assists 21 23
Turnovers 20 15
Steals 6 8
Blocks 4 6
Fast Break Points 5 3
Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 20 (0/0) 22 (1/0)

Top Performers

Ronald Murray Murray
Points: 29
Reb: 6
Ast: 8
Stl: 1
Blk: 0
Kevin Garnett Garnett
Points: 26
Reb: 13
Ast: 4
Stl: 0
Blk: 1