SEATTLE-David West scored 21 points in the latest in a string of strong performances, and the New Orleans Hornets won consecutive games for the second time this season with a 105-99 victory over the Seattle SuperSonics.

West had averaged 25 points and 10 rebounds in his previous three games coming in. He was 7-of-12 from the field and grabbed five rebounds against Seattle.

The Hornets had six players in double figures, including 17 points and 10 assists from rookie point guard Chris Paul. J.R. Smith added 19 points, nine in the fourth quarter, while reserves Speedy Claxton and Desmond Mason each had 14.

New Orleans, which beat Atlanta and Orlando last week for its first two-game winning streak since 2003, defeated Minnesota on Wednesday and has won four of its last five.

Rashard Lewis led six Seattle players in double figures with 21 points, but Seattle was outscored 34-12 at the free throw line.

Vladimir Radmanovic came off the bench to score 14, and Nick Collison and Ronald Murray both scored 13. Luke Ridnour had 12.

The Hornets never trailed in the second half, despite a handful of runs by the SuperSonics. Seattle got to 79-75 with 10:23 left on a 3-pointer by Radmanovic, but West answered with a fallaway 3-pointer as the shot clock expired to put the Hornets back up by seven.

Down 100-89 with less than 90 seconds left, Seattle made a frantic final rally. Lewis made a 3-pointer, followed by jumpers from Collison and Ridnour, pulling the SuperSonics within 100-96 with 38.5 left.

Paul made one of two free throws with 19.5 seconds left, and Radmanovic missed a 3-pointer with 16.2 left, ending Seattle’s hopes. New Orleans broke a five-game losing streak to the SuperSonics and handed Seattle its third straight loss.

Seattle’s Ray Allen came into the game having scored 23 points per game against the Hornets in his career, but struggled with foul trouble. He sat the final 10 minutes of the first half after picking up his third foul, and fouled out with 4:29 left trying to chase down a rebound.

Allen finished with 15 points, matching his season-low.

Notes: Hornets center Chris Andersen did not play for the second consecutive game with a bruised back and sore right knee. … Mason received a warm ovation in his return to Seattle. Mason played 21/2 seasons in Seattle before being traded to Milwaukee. He was dealt by the Hornets before the start of this season. … The Hornets wore their gold road uniforms for the first time this season.

AP-ES-11-26-05 1827EST


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