Seattle 86; Detroit 79

Feb. 25, 2003 at 9:12 AM
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SEATTLE, Feb. 25 (UPI) -- Ray Allen scored 23 points and Rashard Lewis added 22 Monday night as the Seattle Sonics won their third straight home game, 86-79 over the Detroit Pistons.

Allen, playing in his first home contest since being acquired in the big deal at the trading deadline that sent superstar veteran Gary Payton to Milwaukee, collected 10 points in the fourth quarter to help the Sonics split their season series with the Pistons.

"I think at the end of the game, the ball is going go to the guys that can put the ball in the basket," Allen said. "I like to have the ball at the end of the game so I can find those guys to make plays. But at the end of the game, I am ready to take the shot."

After the game, Allen was given a standing ovation as he acknowledged the crowd of 15,718 at KeyArena.

"It was awesome," Allen said. "I was so pleased to feel welcomed. That was one of my biggest worries, coming in and not being welcomed. The fans just didn't know me and they were losing such a great guy and a great player. I just have to come in here and play hard."

The Sonics held a three-point lead with just over four minutes left when Lewis hit a free throw to spark an 8-2 burst. Predrag Drobnjak capped the surge, hitting a jumper with 89 seconds left to give the Sonics an 84-75 cushion.

Richard Hamilton scored 22 points on 7-of-11 shooting for the Pistons, who have dropped three straight games after winning nine of 10. They had not lost three in a row since Nov. 30-Dec. 7.

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