SEATTLE (Ticker) -- The Phoenix Suns have a big hole to fill with the loss of Joe Johnson. Raja Bell let the front office and fans know the position is in good hands.

Bell, who spent the last two years with the Utah Jazz, scored 26 points as the Phoenix Suns rallied from a 16-point, first-half deficit for a 114-113 victory over the Seattle SuperSonics.

Johnson, who was traded to Atlanta in a controversial sign-and-trade deal that was finalized just a month prior to training camp, did a little of everything for the surprising Suns last season.

Phoenix signed Bell as a free agent this summer after the guard averaged a career-high 12.3 points last season. Over his five-year career, he has averaged 7.3 points for Philadelphia, Dallas and Utah.

Bell shot 11-of-16 from the floor Friday, including 4-of-7 from the arc, and added seven rebounds in 36 minutes.

Seattle used a 24-8 run over the final 6:48 of the first half to take a 14-point lead into the break.

The Sonics led, 97-87, with 11:20 remaining before the Suns started chipping away. They took the lead when Jerome James converted a three-point play with 2:12 left for a 112-110 edge. Kurt Thomas added two free throws before Seattle's Ray Allen closed out the scoring with a 3-pointer.

Seattle had one last gasp when Phoenix was called for a 24-second violation with 4.7 seconds to play. The Sonics inbounded to Luke Ridnour, whose 18-footer at the buzzer was partially blocked.

James, who will be asked to play a more vital role with All-Star Amare Stoudemire out four months recovering from knee surgery, finished with 18 points, while Thomas added 10 and 10 rebounds. Playing in place of NBA MVP Steve Nash, who is suffering from a cold, Leandro Barbosa added 13 points and seven assists.

Allen, who signed a five-year, $45 million contract in the offseason, led Seattle with 28 points, while Ridnour added 18, 10 assists and seven rebounds.

Ridnour, beginning his third year, started for Seattle last season, but coach Nate McMillan often played stellar sixth man Antonio Daniels during crunch time. Since Daniels signed with Washington as a free agent during the summer, Ridnour will have to improve upon his 40.5 shooting percentage and 8.0 scoring average.