Regular Season Series (Game 2 of 4)

Series starts 11/26

Game 1: Saturday, November 26th
Game 2: Wednesday, February 8th
Game 3: Tuesday, February 28th
Game 4: Wednesday, April 12th

SuperSonics 102

(19-30, 8-17 away)

Hornets 109

(25-23, 16-8 home)

    Coverage: COX

    7:00 PM ET, February 8, 2006

    Chesapeake Energy Arena, Oklahoma City, OK

    1 2 3 4 T
    SEA 20 27 26 29102
    NO 26 21 30 32109

    Top Performers

    Sea: R. Lewis 34 Pts, 2 Reb, 1 Ast, 2 Stl

    NO: D. West 26 Pts, 10 Reb, 2 Ast, 2 Stl, 1 Blk

    Hornets lose Claxton, Paul, rally to beat Sonics

    OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) -- The New Orleans Hornets might not have won a game like this back in December.

    On a night when star rookie point guard Chris Paul and backup Speedy Claxton each left with injuries and Seattle's Rashard Lewis scored 34 points, the Hornets managed to beat the SuperSonics 109-102 on Wednesday.

    Kirk Snyder, forced out of his usual off-guard spot, had 16 points and a career-high 12 assists in 45 minutes, also a career best for the second-year player. David West had 26 points and 10 rebounds and P.J. Brown scored 21 with nine rebounds.

    "It shows the character of this team," said Desmond Mason, who had 15 points and spent time at the point. "I think we're getting more confidence in ourselves. It shows we have grown as a basketball team."

    Rasual Butler's 3-pointer with 15 seconds remaining gave New Orleans a 105-102 lead. The Hornets made two defensive stops after that and sealed the victory with free throws by Brown and Mason.

    Paul played 20 minutes, leaving for good early in the third quarter with bruised ribs. A blow to the head left Claxton with a mild concussion. He played less than a minute in the second quarter.

    "Hopefully, one of them will be back soon -- soon being Friday," coach Byron Scott said. Without Paul and Claxton, "It puts a lot more emphasis on guys to play a lot more minutes. But that's pro basketball. You've got to be ready to play."

    Lewis was the star for Seattle, which went winless during a four-game road trip. He hit three 3-pointers during an 11-4 run that gave the Sonics a 93-88 lead with 4:51 remaining. He came through again with 1:03 to play, hitting from long range for a 102-100 lead after Ray Allen's shot in the lane was blocked by Butler.

    West tied it with two free throws with 42 seconds left. After Luke Ridnour missed a jump shot, Butler sank his 3-pointer from the right wing to give New Orleans the lead for good.

    "We played well enough to win, but we just didn't get it done," Sonics forward Nick Collison said. "Rashard played very well for us making big shots in the fourth. They made big plays down the stretch."

    Allen scored 18 on 6-of-21 shooting, and Ridnour had 12 points and nine assists.

    Paul, already bothered by a sore lower back from a fall Monday against New Jersey, left with 7:01 remaining in the second quarter after colliding with Collison on a drive to the basket.

    The Hornets led by nine at the time but made only two field goals the rest of the quarter and committed four turnovers as Seattle came back to tie it at 47 at halftime. Allen, scoreless in the first quarter, had 13 in the second to lead the Sonics back from what was a 16-point deficit.

    Paul played the first 3:21 of the third quarter, picking up a basket and an assist, but then checked out for good.

    Game notes

    Before the game, the Hornets rescinded their trade for Philadelphia 76ers reserve center Steven Hunter. "We'll go back to the drawing board," Scott said. "We had different scenarios drawn up before we got Steven, so we'll go to plan B." ... Attendance was 18,807 on a night when Oklahoma played Oklahoma State in a basketball game televised statewide and the ninth-ranked Oklahoma women's team played at home.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    Team Stat Comparison

    Points 102 109
    FGM-FGA 41-88 (.466) 39-75 (.520)
    3PM-3PA 9-23 (.391) 6-17 (.353)
    FTM-FTA 11-17 (.647) 25-32 (.781)
    Rebounds (Offensive-Total) 12-37 10-41
    Assists 22 23
    Turnovers 12 14
    Steals 7 9
    Blocks 4 5
    Fast Break Points 21 12
    Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 26 (1/0) 20 (1/0)
    Largest Lead 5 16

    Top Performers

    No/oklahoma City
    Rashard Lewis Lewis
    Points: 34
    Reb: 2
    Ast: 1
    Stl: 2
    Blk: 0
    David West West
    Points: 26
    Reb: 10
    Ast: 2
    Stl: 2
    Blk: 1