Lewis, Evans power surging Sonics past Jazz

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) -- The player the Seattle SuperSonics
struggled the most to stop was one of their own.

The Sonics had far less trouble with the Utah Jazz.

Seattle got back to .500 on Friday with a 106-90 victory at Utah, marred by Danny Fortson's ejection and attempt to go after one of the officials before leaving the court early in the fourth quarter.

"You have to make sure that when you get a little bit wild and crazy that it can't affect the game," said Seattle's Ray Allen,
who had 19 points, six assists and was the first person to grab Fortson as he stormed toward official Mike Callahan after getting his second technical foul of the night.

Coach Bob Weiss and assistant Jack Sikma ran onto the court to help corral Fortson and kept an ugly moment from getting any worse. Seattle was already up 20 points and on its way to improving to 8-8 and didn't need Fortson's outburst to overshadow its fifth win in six games.

But it was one of the more exciting moments of what became a blowout after a big run by the Sonics in the third quarter.

Rashard Lewis scored 26 points and Reggie Evans pulled down a season-high 18 rebounds for Seattle. Vladimir Radmanovic had 17 points, Luke Ridnour scored 16 and Ronald Murray finished with 12 points for Seattle.

"It reminded me of last year's Sonics," Evans said. "Everybody finding their rhythm and finding their shot. We look like the old Sonics. It felt good tonight."

Utah fell to 1-2 on a five-game homestand and the Jazz are just 3-8 in the Delta Center this season.

Andrei Kirilenko had 17 points, 11 rebounds and three blocks to lead the Jazz, who held off the Sonics 93-87 last month in Seattle.

"I think it looked like we took them lightly tonight. And we have no reason to take anybody lightly," Jazz coach Jerry Sloan said.

Seattle was just 2-5 on the road entering the game but had an easy time Friday. The Jazz helped by going 3-for-15 on 3-pointers and making just 23-of-35 free throws.

Matt Harpring scored 16 points, Devin Brown had 14 and Deron Williams finished with 12 points and seven assists for Utah, which never regrouped after a Seattle run in the third quarter.

"We felt like we should have beat them [in Seattle]," Allen said. We took them for granted because of their injuries."

The Sonics had avenged the loss to Utah before the third quarter was over.

After Williams got the Jazz within 69-59 with a steal and layup, Lewis hit a turnaround jumper to start an 11-2 run for Seattle. Lewis added a free throw after making a steal and Ridnour got a layup high off the glass over the hand of Kirilenko to put Seattle up 74-59.

Harpring made a layup for Utah and then Seattle promptly scored six more. Nick Collison put back an offensive rebound, Ridnour added another acrobatic layup over Mehmet Okur and Allen made a layup to put the Sonics up 80-61 with 3:30 left in the third.

"We get one guy playing well, three or four guys drop off," Sloan said. "We're not good enough to play that way."

Jazz fans were booing when Utah called timeout and got a few more boos in before it was finally over. About the only thing they had to cheer was Fortson's ejection and outburst before leaving the court.

Once Fortson figured out he'd been tossed after being called for elbowing Jarron Collins, he ripped his jersey out and stormed toward official Mike Callahan, who had walked to the other end of the court. Allen grabbed him, and Weiss and Sikma ran off the bench
to help keep the 260-pound Fortson from getting in any more trouble.

Fortson's first technical came with 10:29 left in the second quarter after getting his third foul, also in a scramble with Collins. Fortson said something as he walked past Callahan on his way back to the bench and was called for the technical.

Game notes
Evans' season high for rebounds was 13 on Nov. 30 against Charlotte. ... The Sonics made 6-of-11 3-pointers in the first half. ... Greg Ostertag was the only Utah starter who didn't score in double figures. The Jazz center didn't score at all and finished with two rebounds. ... Collins scored 13 points for Utah.