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NBA FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL --- --- --- --- ----- DENVER 32 18 29 20 99 SEATTLE 42 26 22 22 112 FINAL

HIGH SCORERS: DEN - NICK VAN EXEL 26, JAMES POSEY 11, FOUR PLAYERS WITH 10 SEA - GARY PAYTON 35, RASHARD LEWIS 18, SHAMMOND WILLIAMS 16

HIGH REBOUND: DEN - KEON CLARK 6, RAEF LAFRENTZ 6 SEA - PATRICK EWING 8, VIN BAKER 8

HIGH ASSISTS: DEN - NICK VAN EXEL 7, FIVE PLAYERS WITH 2 SEA - GARY PAYTON 10, FOUR PLAYERS WITH 3

ATT: 17,072


Extended Box

DENVER (99) AT SEATTLE (112)

DENVER REBOUNDS PLAYER POS MIN FGM-FGA FTM-FTA OFF-DEF-TOT AST PF ST TO PTS ====== === === ======= ======= =========== === == == == ===

MCDYESS F 18 5-10 0-1 1 3 4 0 5 1 2 10 POSEY F 31 4-9 1-2 1 2 3 2 0 3 2 11 LAFRENTZ C 29 2-10 1-4 4 2 6 2 4 0 0 5 ABDUL-WAHAD G 22 1-2 1-2 0 1 1 2 1 1 0 3 VAN EXEL G 33 10-23 2-5 0 2 2 7 0 0 1 26 CLARK 15 5-7 0-0 2 4 6 0 6 0 0 10 DAVIS 19 1-1 0-1 0 2 2 1 3 0 1 2 LENARD 26 4-11 1-1 1 2 3 2 3 3 1 10 STRICKLAND 15 2-4 1-2 1 1 2 0 0 0 0 5 MCCLOUD 10 2-5 1-1 1 1 2 1 1 1 2 5 PACK 15 3-4 4-5 0 1 1 2 3 2 4 10 MURRAY 7 0-2 2-2 0 1 1 1 0 0 0 2

TOTALS 240 39-88 14-26 11 22 33 20 26 11 13 99 (.443) (.538) TEAM REBS: 9 TOTAL TO: 13(19 PTS)

SEATTLE REBOUNDS PLAYER POS MIN FGM-FGA FTM-FTA OFF-DEF-TOT AST PF ST TO PTS ====== === === ======= ======= =========== === == == == ===

BAKER F 31 4-8 2-4 0 8 8 2 4 1 2 10 LEWIS F 33 7-13 3-3 3 2 5 3 1 0 3 18 EWING C 33 5-11 1-1 2 6 8 3 2 1 4 11 MASON G 20 0-3 0-0 0 6 6 0 4 0 2 0 PAYTON G 35 13-16 8-10 0 4 4 10 4 2 3 35 PATTERSON 23 4-10 1-1 2 2 4 3 1 2 2 9 WOLKOWYSKI 13 1-4 0-0 0 3 3 0 1 0 1 2 S WILLIAMS 28 5-7 3-3 0 2 2 3 4 0 4 16 DAVIS 6 1-1 0-0 0 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 ELLISON 1 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 MCCOY 17 4-6 1-2 3 3 6 2 1 0 2 9 B BARRY DNP - LEFT ANKLE SPRAIN

TOTALS 240 44-79 19-24 10 37 47 27 23 7 24 112 (.557) (.792) TEAM REBS: 12 TOTAL TO: 25(32 PTS)

DENVER 32 18 29 20 - 99 SEATTLE 42 26 22 22 - 112

BLOCKED SHOTS: DENVER - LAFRENTZ 2, MCDYESS 2, POSEY. SEATTLE - LEWIS, EWING, BAKER, MCCOY. 3-PT. FIELD GOALS: DENVER 7-25 (.280), POSEY 2-6, LAFRENTZ 0-3, VAN EXEL 4-11, LENARD 1-2, MCCLOUD 0-1, MURRAY 0-2. SEATTLE 5-12 (.417), BAKER 0-1, LEWIS 1-4, PAYTON 1-1, WOLKOWYSKI 0-1, S WILLIAMS 3-5. TECHNICALS: DENVER - VAN EXEL, ILLEGAL DEFENSE, LENARD, SEATTLE - HEAD COACH P WESTPHAL, , PAYTON. OFFICIALS: TOMMY NUNEZ, JACK NIES, VIOLET PALMER. A - 17,072. T - 2:16.


Box Score

DENVER (99) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp Mcdyess 18 5-10 0-1 1-4 0 5 10 Posey 31 4-9 1-2 1-3 2 0 11 Lafrentz 29 2-10 1-4 4-6 2 4 5 Abdul-wahad 22 1-2 1-2 0-1 2 1 3 Van Exel 33 10-23 2-5 0-2 7 0 26 Clark 15 5-7 0-0 2-6 0 6 10 Davis 19 1-1 0-1 0-2 1 3 2 Lenard 26 4-11 1-1 1-3 2 3 10 Strickland 15 2-4 1-2 1-2 0 0 5 Mccloud 10 2-5 1-1 1-2 1 1 5 Pack 15 3-4 4-5 0-1 2 3 10 Murray 7 0-2 2-2 0-1 1 0 2 _______________________________________________ TOTALS 240 39-88 14-26 11-33 20 26 99 _______________________________________________

Percentages: FG-.443, FT-.538. 3-Point Goals: 7-25, .280 (Posey 2-6, Lafrentz 0-3, Van Exel 4-11, Lenard 1-2, Mccloud 0-1, Murray 0-2). Team rebounds: 9. Blocked shots: 5 (Lafrentz 2, Mcdyess 2, Posey). Turnovers: 13 (Pack 4, Mccloud 2, Mcdyess 2, Posey 2, Davis, Lenard, Van Exel). Steals: 11 (Lenard 3, Posey 3, Pack 2, Abdul-wahad, Mccloud, Mcdyess).

SEATTLE (112) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp Baker 31 4-8 2-4 0-8 2 4 10 Lewis 33 7-13 3-3 3-5 3 1 18 Ewing 33 5-11 1-1 2-8 3 2 11 Mason 20 0-3 0-0 0-6 0 4 0 Payton 35 13-16 8-10 0-4 10 4 35 Patterson 23 4-10 1-1 2-4 3 1 9 Wolkowyski 13 1-4 0-0 0-3 0 1 2 S Williams 28 5-7 3-3 0-2 3 4 16 Davis 6 1-1 0-0 0-1 1 1 2 Ellison 1 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 Mccoy 17 4-6 1-2 3-6 2 1 9 B Barry DNP - left ankle sprain _______________________________________________ TOTALS 240 44-79 19-24 10-47 27 23 112 _______________________________________________

Percentages: FG-.557, FT-.792. 3-Point Goals: 5-12, .417 (Baker 0-1, Lewis 1-4, Payton 1-1, Wolkowyski 0-1, S Williams 3-5). Team rebounds: 12. Blocked shots: 4 (Lewis, Ewing, Baker, Mccoy). Turnovers: 25 (Ewing 4, S Williams 4, Lewis 3, Payton 3, Baker 2, Mason 2, Mccoy 2, Patterson 2, Davis, Wolkowyski). Steals: 7 (Patterson 2, Payton 2, Baker, Davis, Ewing). ____________________________________________ Denver 32 18 29 20 - 99 Seattle 42 26 22 22 - 112 ____________________________________________ Technical fouls: Denver 3 (Van Exel, 6:33 1st; Illegal Defense, 11:11 2nd; Lenard, 0:23 4th). Seattle 3 (Head Coach P Westphal, 7:18 3rd; , 10:45 4th; Payton, 0:23 4th). Flagrant fouls: None. A: 17,072. T: 2:16. Officials: Tommy Nunez, Jack Nies, Violet Palmer.


Game Story

SEATTLE (Ticker) -- Even with the offseason acquisition of center Patrick Ewing, the Seattle SuperSonics are still Gary Payton's team.

Payton followed up a triple-double in the season opener with 35 point and 10 assists as the SuperSonics poured it on early to defeat the Denver Nuggets for the 15th straight time at KeyArena, 112-99.

In Seattle's home opener, Payton hit 13-of-16 shots, including 8-of-9 during an awesome first-quarter performance, when he collected 18 points and five assists to help the Sonics to a 42-32 advantage.

Led by Payton's penetration and Denver's unwillingness to play interior defense, Seattle shot an incredible 74 percent (17-of-23) in the period and made all eight of its free throws.

Seattle's superstar point guard had 27 points, 14 rebounds and 10 assists in an opening-night loss Tuesday at Vancouver for his 11th career triple-double.

"I'm not doing anything, just trying to get wins," Payton said modestly. "I'm just playing basketball right now, just having fun."

Ewing, who collected just two points and 12 boards in the opener, turned in a much better effort tonight with 11 and eight.

"Gary's a great player. He talks a lot of trash but it feels good playing with him," Ewing said. "Last night we came out flat, tonight we jumped on them early. I'm comfortable. When I have my opportunity to score, I try to score. When I don't, I'll pass, rebound and play defense."

Nick Van Exel had 26 points and seven assists for Denver, which has not won a regular-season contest in Seattle since February 9, 1993. Denver stunned top-seeded Seattle in the first round of the 1994 playoffs, winning the fifth and decisive game in Seattle after trailing the series, 2-0.

The Nuggets' offense was almost as hot as Seattle's in the opening quarter, converting 56 percent (14-of-25) of its shots with Van Exel collecting 14 points and four assists. But Denver paid little attention to defense, yielding countless layups and short jumpers in the paint.

"It was awful. On defense, it looked as though our players hadn't seen each other before," exasperated Nuggets coach Dan Issel said. "We weren't ready to play. How can you not be ready to play the first game of the year?"

"Our defense was bad in the beginning, Payton got six or seven layups in the first quarter, he set the tone early," Van Exel said.

Seattle's front line of Ewing, Vin Baker and Rashard Lewis combined for 21 points in the first quarter on 8-of-9 shooting. The Sonics maintained a double-digit lead throughout the second period and went into halftime with a 68-50 cushion.

The Sonics opened the third quarter with a 10-2 spurt to take their largest lead, 78-52. Van Exel capped a 21-2 outburst with back-to-back 3-pointers that shaved the deficit to 80-73 with 3:30 left in the period but Seattle reeled off 10 straight points and took a 90-79 advantage into the fourth quarter.

The Nuggets never got any closer in the final period.

Lewis had 18 points and Shammond Williams added 16 off the bench for Seattle, which hosts Portland on Saturday before embarking on a five-game road trip.

Denver shot 44 percent (39-of-88), converted only 14-of-26 free throws and was outrebounded 47-33.

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