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NBA Reserve leads Sonics to win against Cavs



Published: Tue, January 18, 2005 @ 12:00 a.m.



Vladimir Radmanovic sparked Seattle to its fourth win in five games.

SEATTLE (AP) -- Even the absence of Rashard Lewis isn't slowing down the Seattle SuperSonics.

Ray Allen scored 27 points and Vladimir Radmanovic added 23 points and 11 rebounds, leading the Sonics to a 105-97 victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers on Sunday night.

The Sonics won their second straight game without Lewis, their second-leading scorer who is sidelined with tendinitis in his left knee.

Allen said the play of Radmanovic -- one of Seattle's primary reserves -- was the key to the Sonics' win, their fourth in five games.

"Vlade has a focus about him that he knows he's being counted on," Allen said. "He knows he's going to get shots. He's a big weapon for us."

LeBron James, making his second trip to Seattle, had 35 points and 11 assists. James, who ranks sixth in the league in scoring, shot 14-for-30 from the field.

James agreed with Allen.

"They got a great contribution off the bench from Vladimir," he said. "I've been watching what he's been doing all year, and we knew he can shoot the ball real well. He's a threat to any team that comes in here."

Fourth quarter leaders

Allen, the league's No. 7 scorer, had seven points in the fourth quarter to help hold off the Cavs and James.

Allen drove the baseline and hit a 5-footer with 1:38 remaining, giving Seattle a 94-88 lead, then equaled James' 3-pointer with one of his own with 1:12 to go to put the Sonics up 97-91.

"The fourth quarter is my time, I feel," Allen said. "Whether I make a shot or not. I'm going to do something. I'm going to be heard or seen in the fourth quarter."

James had a dunk with 30.8 seconds to go, cutting Seattle's lead to 97-93, but the Sonics' Luke Ridnour made six free throws and Antonio Daniels added a pair from the line in the final 28.4 seconds.

"Any time at the end of the game you want to convert on free throws," Ridnour said. "You want to knock them down from the line just to maintain that lead."

Drew Gooden finished with 27 points for Cleveland.

Ridnour had a career-high 18 points for Seattle, while Antonio Daniels added 15.

The Northwest Division-leading Sonics improved to 27-9, while the Cavs fell to 22-14. Cleveland lost for just the second time in seven games.




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