<
>

Allen helps SuperSonics clip Hawks' streak in overtime

ATLANTA (AP) -- Ray Allen knew a traditional move wasn't going to
work against Josh Smith.

Allen made a layup over Smith's outstretched arms with 1.2
seconds left in overtime to give the Seattle SuperSonics a 113-112
victory over the Atlanta Hawks on Saturday night.


"I went to the hole before overtime and he was right there,"
Allen said of the NBA's second-leading shot blocker last season. I
switched it back to my left, he looked like he was about to jump. I
knew I had the same opportunity."

Changing his approach near the basket, Allen shot the ball with
his left hand to slow Smith for a split second.

"He jumped this time," Allen said. "He was right there at the
basket. I just wanted to get the ball up in the air."

Allen finished with a season-high 33 points, 14 coming in the
fourth quarter and overtime.

Joe Johnson, who led Atlanta with 28 points, gave the Hawks a
112-111 lead with a runner he banked in from right side with 22
seconds remaining.

"We're trying to come out every game with a lot of energy,"
Johnson said. "Tonight I thought we got off to such a slow start,
which kind of hurt us."

Atlanta had won four straight. Josh Childress forced overtime by
tipping in Johnson's missed 3-point attempt with 26 seconds left in
regulation.

In the final seconds of regulation, Luke Ridnour missed from 29
feet for Seattle before Nick Collison blocked Johnson's 3-point
attempt from the left side.

Rashard Lewis scored 23 and Ridnour 19 for Seattle, which has
won two straight on the road for the first time since last Jan.
22-25 at Phoenix and Utah.

Chris Wilcox pulled down 15 of the Sonics' 40 rebounds. The
Hawks had 47, led by 10 from Johnson.

Sonics coach Bob Hill wasn't worried when Johnson launched a 3
that fell short from the left wing.

"I've watched people shoot basketballs for so long that I can
pretty much tell you that the ball's got a chance or not when it
comes out of their hand," Hill said. "I really can, and that one
didn't have a chance from the minute it left."

Smith had 24 points for Atlanta, going 9-for-20 from the field
and hitting consecutive 3s in overtime. Zaza Pachulia finished with
21.

The Hawks never led by more than five points, the final time
coming on Johnson's 13-foot jumper with 7:54 remaining.

Seattle's biggest lead was nine, which Ridnour provided with a
pair of free throws early in the third quarter.

The lead changed hands 18 times.

"I actually like close games," Hill said. "I think they're
fun. They're more fun when you win. We answered, they answered, and
we answered last. It was fun. It was a back-to-back for both teams,
so all those guys out there are going to be pretty tired tonight."

Atlanta coach Mike Woodson had a bad feeling as his team
continued to struggle with free throws. The Hawks hit just 21 of 33
attempts.

"We came out of training camp shooting 80 percent from the
line, and I think we're shooting in the low 70s now," Woodson
said. "Over the last few games, we haven't made free throws. I
don't know what it is. We just have to go back to practicing and
continue to shoot them."

Game notes
Johnson became the first player in Hawks history to score
25 or more points in each of the first six games. ... Reserve G
Earl Watson, who upset Sonics coach Bob Hill by complaining about
playing time the night before, was 1-for-5 from the field with no
assists in 19 minutes. ... Lewis recovered quickly after his eye
was poked on the last play of regulation. "I went to the basket
and I took another dribble and right when I was ready to go for the
shot, I got hit in the eye, so I really couldn't see the basket,"
Lewis said. "I saw that Luke got open at the last second and I
flipped the ball to him."