SEATTLE, April 23 (Ticker) -- Jerome James was there to clean up after his teammates.

James had the game of his life with 17 points, 15 rebounds and five blocks as the Seattle SuperSonics held on for an 87-82 victory over the Sacramento Kings in Game One of their Western Conference first-round series.

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The third-seeded SuperSonics, who rely heavily on the jump shot, survived 36.5 percent (31-of-85) shooting and held off the sixth-seeded Kings, who erased nearly all of a 21-point third-quarter deficit but could not overcome their own shooting woes.

On a perimeter-based team with All-Stars Ray Allen and Rashard Lewis, James often is an afterthought despite his 7-1, 275-pound frame. He averaged just 4.9 points and 3.0 rebounds this season and often was the first player pulled when coach Nate McMillan opted for a small lineup.

But in his first playoff game in three years, the big guy came up big. He set an early tone on both backboards with blocked shots and eight of Seattle's 22 offensive rebounds, a handful of which he turned into follow shots.

However, James' biggest basket came in the final minute. A jumper and 3-pointer by Cuttino Mobley pulled Sacramento within 83-82 with 42 seconds to go. On the next possession, Antonio Daniels took a backdoor pass from Lewis and fed James, whose hoop gave Seattle an 85-82 edge with 25 seconds left.

Mobley missed a 3-pointer and Mike Bibby fired an airball on a 3-pointer before Allen sealed it with two free throws with 8.7 seconds remaining.

The miss capped an awful game for Bibby, one of the NBA's best clutch shooters. He made just 1-of-16 shots, dragging Sacramento down under 39 percent (34-of-88).

Allen had 28 points and 10 rebounds, Lewis scored 18 points and Reggie Evans also swept 15 boards for Seattle, which hosts Game Two of the best-of-seven series Tuesday.

Sacramento's Peja Stojakovic played through a groin strain to score 24 points but none in the final nine minutes. Mobley added 22 points for the Kings.