Tuesday , Dec , 05 , 2006 C.Y. Ellis

Sonics need an identity

(Sports Network) – All-Star Ray Allen is the cornerstone of the Seattle
SuperSonics franchise. The All-Star guard is arguably the best shooter in the
league and has the ability to take over a game.

Sonics need an identity

Even with the talented Allen, who is a six-time All-Star, on the roster,
Seattle management has struggled to put together a squad around him that is
consistently a contender. Allen is averaging a team-best 25.3 points per game
and has scored in double-digits in all 18 of Seattle’s contests this season.

Rashard Lewis is still Seattle’s second-best option. The 6-10 forward is
second on the club in scoring (22.6 ppg) and has pulled down 6.5
rebounds per game, while starting point guard Luke Ridnour, who is the third
part of the nucleus, is averaging 14.9 points and a team-high 6.5 assists.

Allen, Lewis and Ridnour are a solid threesome, but something is missing in
Seattle. The SuperSonics look like a team that is headed for the lottery for a
second straight year.

The SuperSonics own a below average 7-11 record and sit in fourth place in the
Northwest Division. On Tuesday, The Atlanta Hawks play the second of a five-
game road trip as they visit Seattle at KeyArena. It is the second and final
meeting of the season between the clubs. On November 11th, Allen poured in 33
points, including the game-winning layup with 1.2 seconds remaining in
overtime to lead the SuperSonics to a 113-112 victory over the Hawks at
Philips Arena.

The Sonics have won six in a row in over Atlanta, which has lost two straight
and four of its last five at Seattle.

Seattle tries to bounce back from a loss, as it starts a three-game homestand
against the Hawks. On Saturday, Mehmet Okur drilled the game-winning three-
pointer with 1.6 seconds left in regulation to lift the Utah Jazz past the
SuperSonics, 109-107, at EnergySolutions Arena.

Allen finished with 33 points, 20 of which came in the fourth quarter, despite
shooting 8-of-19 from the field in the loss to Utah for the SuperSonics, who
have lost four of their last five contests overall. Lewis collected 27 points
and eight rebounds in defeat.

The SuperSonics are 3-6 at KeyArena this season. They will host Chris Paul
and the New Orleans/Oklahoma City Hornets on Friday and Jason Richardson
and the Golden State Warriors on Sunday in the finale of the homestand.

Seattle has scored 100 or more points nine times this season and is 4-5 in
those contests. The Sonics are 4-6 when they allow over 100 points to their