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Wallace returns as Bulls record rare road win

Feb 3, 2007 - 7:47 AM SEATTLE (Ticker) -- The return of Ben Wallace was just enough motivation to help the Chicago Bulls end their West Coast woes.

Luol Deng scored 27 points and Kirk Hinrich added 20 and nine assists as the Bulls posted a 107-101 triumph over the Seattle SuperSonics.

Chris Duhon scored 16 points off the bench and P.J. Brown and Andres Nocioni added 14 apiece for Chicago, which collected its first win over a Western Conference opponent since December 1 and improved to just 7-14 on the road.

"Our road record is not where it should be," Duhon said. "We have a tough trip ahead of us so for us to come out and be able to grind one out for a win should get us some confidence for upcoming games."

This contest was the second of seven straight games away from the United Center.

"I felt we were solid and we made the little plays on both ends to get the win," Brown said. "So hopefully we can springboard off of this thing and keep going. I thought all of our guys just really played hard."

Wallace missed Wednesday's loss to the Clippers with a bruised left knee, which he suffered in Saturday's win against Miami. The 2006 Defensive Player of the Year finished with two rebounds and one block in 23 minutes.

In the fourth quarter, Nocioni scored on a driving layup to help the Bulls build a 95-89 advantage with 4 1/2 minutes remaining.

But Seattle rallied to take the lead when forward Nick Collison converted a three-point play, capping an 8-0 surge for a 97-95 edge just one minute later.

However, Deng's layup triggered a game-ending 12-5 burst over the final three minutes to seal the win. Nocioni scored five points during the run.

"We were slow-footed and just got much more active," Chicago coach Scott Skiles said. "We got a few breaks and started to making good decisions."

The 6-9 Deng connected on 9-of-13 shots and pulled down 12 rebounds. He also sank 9-of-13 from the free-throw line.

"I thought (Deng) was terrific," Seattle coach Bob Hill said. "I don't know what his numbers were, but I know he had a lot of points and a lot of rebounds."

Ray Allen scored 29 points and Collison registered his eighth double-double in 11 games for the Sonics, who dropped their fourth straight game.

"As a team defensively we've got to adjust and get to those spots because those are where we los games," Allen said.

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