A return to their home court might be just what the Seattle SuperSonics need.

The SuperSonics look to continue their strong play at home when they host the
New York Knicks on Friday.

Seattle (13-21) has dropped 10 of its last 13 games, including Wednesday's 103-96 defeat at Houston. However, all but one of those losses came on the road, where the SuperSonics have lost 10 in a row.

The Sonics have won three straight and seven of eight at home. After Friday's game, Seattle visits Golden State and Phoenix before returning for a seven-game homestand.

Ray Allen scored 32 points Wednesday for the Sonics, who shot 50 percent (36-of-72) from the field against the NBA's top team defensively. The Sonics are holding opponents to league-low averages of 89.7 points and 42.1 percent shooting.

Allen, who went 13-of-22 from the floor, was two points off his season high and had his highest-scoring effort in six games since missing three weeks with an ankle injury.

"Ray was awfully special," coach Bob Hill said. "He was on a mission, and he put us on his back and almost carried us."

The Sonics have failed to score 100 points in each of their last five defeats, but have reached triple digits in three straight victories.

"We have to take our game to a higher level and play with a determined edge where everyone has to find a way to do something special," said guard Earl Watson.

Rashard Lewis missed his seventh straight game with a torn tendon in his right hand and is expected to miss at least another month and a half.

"We make small, little mistakes at crucial times of the game and the other team makes a run on us," Allen said. "There are guys that just have to step up and play the game."

The Knicks (14-21) snapped a three-game losing streak with Wednesday's 99-81 win at Portland. Eddy Curry had 27 points and 10 rebounds for his second double-double in four games.

"I'm so used to having a couple of guys on me and trying to put something in the air and get it to go in, I'm not used to having such open lanes to the basket," Curry said. "I did a good job of getting free tonight, and my teammates did a great job of finding me."

New York, which is wrapping up a five-game road trip, was coming off Tuesday's 112-100 loss at Sacramento.

"Last night left a sour taste in my mouth," said Curry, who had 19 points and six rebounds against the Kings. "I felt like if I could have done a little bit more and tried to assert myself early in the game, we would have had a better chance.

"I didn't want to feel like that tonight."

Steve Francis missed his third straight game with left knee tendinitis, Quentin Richardson missed his 10th because of back spasms. While it's unclear when either Francis or Richardson will return, this game will mark the end of guard Nate Robinson's 10-game league suspension for his role in a Dec. 16 brawl against Denver.

These teams haven't played since last season, when the Knicks swept the two-game series after losing four of the previous five meetings.


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