Iguodala, Sixers down Durant-less SuperSonicsJan 1, 2008 - 7:33 AM SEATTLE (Ticker) -- Andre Iguodala and the Philadelphia 76ers took advantage of a big break on their road trek.
Iguodala scored 25 points as the Sixers posted a 98-90 victory over the Seattle SuperSonics in the third game of their season-long six-game road trip on Monday.
Louis Williams had 19 points off the bench and Andre Miller added 15 for Philadelphia, which has won two of the first three games of the trek. It continues at the Utah Jazz on Wednesday.
"It was good to see that we could finish off the game they way that we needed too," Iguodala said. "We just got in and try to play better basketball."
Coming off a 97-72 loss to the red-hot Portland Trail Blazers on Sunday, the Sixers received a big break as rookie sensation Kevin Durant was forced to miss the first game of his budding career for the SuperSonics with a finger injury on his left hand.
The second overall pick in June, Durant was averaging a team-leading 19.7 points in 30 games.
Seattle was also without second-leading scorer Chris Wilcox, who missed the game with a left knee injury. The six-year forward is averaging 13.6 points and 7.6 rebounds.
"They're going to be a good basketball team," Philadelphia coach Maurice Cheeks said. "Certainly if they had Durant and Wilcox, this is a very good team so we're lucky to get out of here with a win. They push the ball as well as any team in the league."
Even with the injuries, Seattle coach P.J. Carlesimo made no excuses.
"This was a game that we could have won," he said. "With the guys we had available and without two of our leading scorers tonight, it is a game we could have won.
"We couldn't make any stops. It just was not quite enough. Iguodala stepped up big and really hurt us in second half."
Despite the absence of its star player, Seattle was able to stick around early, trailing just 33-30 after rookie Jeff Green made one of two free throws with 4:39 left in the second quarter.
"Surprisingly enough this team becomes more dangerous because they have guys that come off the bench that want to establish themselves and be part of that basketball team and they probably play a lot harder and come out with a lot more energy," said Williams about Seattle's situation without Durant. "But everybody wants to play against the best players in the league."
Moments later Philadelphia closed the opening half on a 13-4 run for a 46-34 lead at the break. Iguodala had five points during the spurt.
The Sixers remained in control of the contest - extending the lead to 13 points in the third quarter - before the Sonics attempted to rally in the fourth.
Delonte West's 3-pointer with 3:43 remaining in the contest sliced Seattle's deficit to 86-83. Iguodala responded with a three-point play, and added a fadeaway jumper with 26 seconds left to make it 95-88.
Iguodala finished 9-of-16 from the field, knocking down eight of his final nine attempts.
Along with scoring 16 points, Green had the unenvious task of trying to slow down Iguodala on the defensive end.
"I just tried to hold my own," he said. "He hit a lot of difficult shots. He's been working on that a lot. I got the chance to play with him over the summer and his jump shot has really improved."
Miller also had seven assists and Rodney Carney scored 11 points for Philadelphia, which shot 49 percent (34-of-69) in scoring over 95 points for the fourth time in six games.
The Sixers could have won by more but did not take full advantage of their numerous trips to the free-throw line, converting 25-of-36 (69 percent). The Sonics attempted just 11 from the stripe, including just two in the first half.
"They were more aggressive than we were and they defended better than we did," Carlesimo said. "They defended without fouling and we didn't. I had no problem with the officiating."
Earl Watson scored 18 points and Nick Collison added 15 and 11 rebounds for the Sonics, who finished with a 46-35 advantage on the glass.
SEATTLE 90 FINAL
Jan 1 12:26 AM
SEATTLE 62 END, 3RD QTR
Dec 31 11:49 PM
SEATTLE 34 HALFTIME
Dec 31 11:09 PM
SEATTLE 23 END, 1ST QTR
Dec 31 10:37 PM
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