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NBA FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL --- --- --- --- ----- DENVER 27 21 23 27 98 SEATTLE 35 36 27 29 127 FINAL

HIGH SCORERS: DEN - ANTONIO MCDYESS 22, RAEF LAFRENTZ 16, MARK STRICKLAND 12 SEA - GARY PAYTON 30, RUBEN PATTERSON 21, RASHARD LEWIS 20

HIGH REBOUND: DEN - ANTONIO MCDYESS 11, MARK STRICKLAND 6 SEA - VIN BAKER 8, THREE PLAYERS WITH 5

HIGH ASSISTS: DEN - NICK VAN EXEL 7, VOSHON LENARD 5 SEA - GARY PAYTON 12, EMANUEL DAVIS 6

ATT: 13,040


Extended Box

DENVER (98) AT SEATTLE (127)

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

MCDYESS F 30 7-16 8-8 3 8 11 2 4 2 1 22 POSEY F 18 2-3 0-0 1 1 2 0 2 0 2 5 LAFRENTZ C 32 7-12 2-2 2 2 4 1 5 0 3 16 LENARD G 29 2-7 3-4 2 1 3 5 1 0 1 9 VAN EXEL G 31 3-9 2-2 0 2 2 7 1 1 1 8 WILLIS 15 3-11 0-0 2 2 4 1 4 1 1 6 MCCLOUD 22 2-5 1-1 0 0 0 1 1 1 0 5 GOLDWIRE 18 1-7 2-3 0 2 2 1 1 0 0 4 BOWEN 16 4-5 1-1 1 2 3 2 0 0 0 9 STRICKLAND 17 5-8 2-5 3 3 6 1 2 1 0 12 ABDUL-WAHAD 12 1-4 0-2 0 0 0 1 1 0 1 2 PACK DNP - COACH'S DECISION

TOTALS 240 37-87 21-28 14 23 37 22 22 6 10 98 (.425) (.750) TEAM REBS: 13 TOTAL TO: 10(14 PTS)

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

BAKER F 37 5-6 6-9 4 4 8 0 5 1 2 16 LEWIS F 34 9-14 0-2 0 4 4 3 3 0 1 20 EWING C 26 4-7 5-5 1 4 5 2 3 3 1 13 B BARRY G 18 1-6 1-2 0 1 1 2 1 0 0 3 PAYTON G 36 14-20 0-1 1 3 4 12 1 1 1 30 PATTERSON 23 9-14 3-4 1 3 4 3 2 0 2 21 DAVIS 27 2-5 0-0 0 5 5 6 2 0 2 5 S WILLIAMS 24 6-8 0-0 0 5 5 3 3 1 0 15 OYEDEJI 7 0-1 0-0 1 2 3 0 0 0 0 0 WOLKOWYSKI 5 1-3 2-2 1 0 1 0 1 1 0 4 MCCOY 3 0-2 0-0 1 0 1 1 0 0 0 0 MASON DNP - SPRAINED RIGHT ANKLE

TOTALS 240 51-86 17-25 10 31 41 32 21 7 9 127 (.593) (.680) TEAM REBS: 9 TOTAL TO: 9(7 PTS)

DENVER 27 21 23 27 - 98 SEATTLE 35 36 27 29 - 127

BLOCKED SHOTS: DENVER - LAFRENTZ 4, STRICKLAND, ABDUL-WAHAD. SEATTLE - EWING 4, BAKER 2, LEWIS, WOLKOWYSKI, OYEDEJI. 3-PT. FIELD GOALS: DENVER 3-12 (.250), POSEY 1-1, LAFRENTZ 0-1, LENARD 2-5, VAN EXEL 0-2, GOLDWIRE 0-3. SEATTLE 8-20 (.400), LEWIS 2-4, B BARRY 0-4, PAYTON 2-3, PATTERSON 0-3, DAVIS 1-3, S WILLIAMS 3-3. TECHNICALS: DENVER - WILLIS, SEATTLE - PATTERSON, S WILLIAMS. OFFICIALS: ED F RUSH, SEAN CORBIN, BILL KENNEDY. A - 13,040. T - 2:07.


Box Score

DENVER (98) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp Mcdyess 30 7-16 8-8 3-11 2 4 22 Posey 18 2-3 0-0 1-2 0 2 5 Lafrentz 32 7-12 2-2 2-4 1 5 16 Lenard 29 2-7 3-4 2-3 5 1 9 Van Exel 31 3-9 2-2 0-2 7 1 8 Willis 15 3-11 0-0 2-4 1 4 6 Mccloud 22 2-5 1-1 0-0 1 1 5 Goldwire 18 1-7 2-3 0-2 1 1 4 Bowen 16 4-5 1-1 1-3 2 0 9 Strickland 17 5-8 2-5 3-6 1 2 12 Abdul-wahad 12 1-4 0-2 0-0 1 1 2 Pack DNP - coach's decision _______________________________________________ TOTALS 240 37-87 21-28 14-37 22 22 98 _______________________________________________

Percentages: FG-.425, FT-.750. 3-Point Goals: 3-12, .250 (Posey 1-1, Lafrentz 0-1, Lenard 2-5, Van Exel 0-2, Goldwire 0-3). Team rebounds: 13. Blocked shots: 6 (Lafrentz 4, Strickland, Abdul-wahad). Turnovers: 10 (Lafrentz 3, Posey 2, Abdul-wahad, Lenard, Mcdyess, Van Exel, Willis). Steals: 6 (Mcdyess 2, Mccloud, Strickland, Van Exel, Willis).

SEATTLE (127) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp Baker 37 5-6 6-9 4-8 0 5 16 Lewis 34 9-14 0-2 0-4 3 3 20 Ewing 26 4-7 5-5 1-5 2 3 13 B Barry 18 1-6 1-2 0-1 2 1 3 Payton 36 14-20 0-1 1-4 12 1 30 Patterson 23 9-14 3-4 1-4 3 2 21 Davis 27 2-5 0-0 0-5 6 2 5 S Williams 24 6-8 0-0 0-5 3 3 15 Oyedeji 7 0-1 0-0 1-3 0 0 0 Wolkowyski 5 1-3 2-2 1-1 0 1 4 Mccoy 3 0-2 0-0 1-1 1 0 0 Mason DNP - sprained right ankle _______________________________________________ TOTALS 240 51-86 17-25 10-41 32 21 127 _______________________________________________

Percentages: FG-.593, FT-.680. 3-Point Goals: 8-20, .400 (Lewis 2-4, B Barry 0-4, Payton 2-3, Patterson 0-3, Davis 1-3, S Williams 3-3). Team rebounds: 9. Blocked shots: 9 (Ewing 4, Baker 2, Lewis, Wolkowyski, Oyedeji). Turnovers: 9 (Baker 2, Davis 2, Patterson 2, Ewing, Lewis, Payton). Steals: 7 (Ewing 3, Baker, Payton, S Williams, Wolkowyski). ____________________________________________ Denver 27 21 23 27 - 98 Seattle 35 36 27 29 - 127 ____________________________________________ Technical fouls: Denver 1 (Willis, 5:26 3rd). Seattle 2 (Patterson, 8:32 4th; S Williams, 1:47 4th). Flagrant fouls: None. A: 13,040. T: 2:07. Officials: Ed F Rush, Sean Corbin, Bill Kennedy.


Game Story

SEATTLE (Ticker) -- Gary Payton will only accept a trade to a contender but the extraordinary point guard showed that he is not done trying to make the Seattle SuperSonics into one.

Payton scored 30 points and handed out 12 assists as the SuperSonics embarrassed the road-weary Denver Nuggets, cruising to a 127-98 rout behind a virtuoso performance by their floor leader.

With rumors swirling that Payton may be on his way out of Seattle by Thursday's 6 p.m. EST trade deadline, the perennial All-Star playmaker focused his concentration on the game between the lines, hitting 14-of-20 shots.

He committed just one turnover in 36 minutes as Seattle blew open the game in the second quarter and never looked back en route to a season-high point total.

"I think he was just a little quicker," Seattle coach Nate McMillan said of his former backcourt mate. "I think you know he feels a little better and his health is a little better. He ran the pick-and-roll very well tonight. In the early offense, he was able to get some easy baskets and he had his legs on his jump shots."

Payton did not speak to the media after the contest but was seen leaving the locker room with his agent, Aaron Goodwin.

"Nick (Van Exel) wasn't getting any help and (Payton) got to the basket anytime he wanted to," Denver coach Dan Issel said. "He shot a very high percentage and he didn't have too many tough shots. It hink we gave him a lot of easy baskets. Gary is a great player and he's gonna have those nights more often than not."

Ruben Patterson scored 21 points and Rashard Lewis added 20 for Seattle, which snapped a three-game skid and handed Denver its 11th loss in 12 road games.

"He means a lot (to us), he's an All-Star," Patterson said of Payton. "Gary means a lot to this team. He was tremendous, it was a great win. We're trying to be focused, trying to win, whatever happens, happens but hopefully everything will go well."

Antonio McDyess had 22 points and 11 rebounds for the Nuggets, who fell out of contention when Seattle opened the second quarter with a 12-0 run, opening a 47-27 cushion.

After Payton scored 15 points on 7-of-10 shooting in the first quarter to give Seattle the lead for good, 35-27, he followed a 3-pointer by Shammond Williams and a dunk by Patterson with two more baskets, extending the margin to 44-27.

Patterson converted a three-point play, giving Seattle a 20-point cushion with 8:53 left in the first half. Things only got uglier for the Nuggets thereafter.

Owners of a sparkling 21-7 home mark, the Nuggets slipped to a dismal 7-21 away from the Pepsi Center and have dropped 10 of their last 12 games overall, slipping behind Seattle and Houston into 11th place in the Western Conference.

The Sonics are three games behind eighth-place Minnesota for the final playoff spot in the West.

Raef LaFrentz scored 16 points and Erick Strickland added 12 for Denver, which shot 42.5 percent (37-of-87) and was outrebounded, 41-37.

Vin Baker scored 16 points, Williams added 15 and Patrick Ewing 13 for Seattle, which shot a blistering 59 percent (51-of-86) and committed just nine turnovers.

"We put the (trade talk) behind us," Baker said. "I think that the biggest thing that showed tonight is that every player came out and played hard tonight. We can't control what happens in the front office."

Payton thwarted any hopes of a second-half comeback when he made a layup, hit a jumper and buried a 3-pointer on successive trips to give the Sonics a commanding 86-56 lead with 6:38 left in the third quarter.

Kevin Willis answered with a hook shot, but Payton scored on the ensuing possession, giving him 11 straight Sonics' points and re-establishing a 30-point bulge.

"They just came out and pushed the ball down our throats," Van Exel said. "We didn't get back defensively and we let Gary penetrate the middle too easily."

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