Take it from Horace Grant, a 13-year NBA veteran: When Seattle's reserves play the way they did Tuesday night, the SuperSonics can play with anyone.
"When the bench comes through and plays like this, it's easy for us," Grant said after the Sonics' highest-scoring game of the season, a 127-91 victory over the Orlando Magic.
Emanual Davis, a reserve guard averaging 3.7 points a game, hit five 3-pointers and scored 17 points. He had three of his 3-pointers when Seattle went on a 22-0 run in the second quarter.
Davis finished the game with a cut lip that he got driving to the basket late in the game.
"I went to the hole when we were up 40," he said. "I was a dummy."
Reserve Rashard Lewis added 21 points for the Sonics.
Gary Payton and Brent Barry, Seattle's starting backcourt, had 17 and 16 points, respectively, against a Magic team coming off a demoralizing overtime loss to the Los Angeles Lakers. Ruben Patterson also had 17 points for the Sonics.
Lewis, a second-year player whom the Sonics drafted out of high school, scored a career-high 30 points in Dallas on Feb. 9. Like Davis, he'd like to get more playing time.
"The more I get to play, the more confidence I get," he said.
Said Davis: "I don't know if a game like this translates into more playing time. We play guys according to matchups."
Chucky Atkins led the Magic with 21 points.
Dais was at his best when Seattle scored 22 unanswered points in the second period, giving the Sonics a 55-31 lead with 2:51 left in the first half.
The Magic went almost six minutes without a point in the period. Ben Wallace's dunk after an offensive rebound was Orlando's first basket since Atkins hit a 16-footer with 3:54 gone in the second quarter.
With Seattle ahead 33-31, Davis connected on a 3-pointer with 7:49 left in the first half. After Davis made two 3-pointers, Payton had a three-point play to give the Sonics a 24-point lead.
"I really didn't know we ran up that many points," Davis said. "Then I looked up at the scoreboard and figured we must have done something."
The Sonics widened the lead in the third quarter as Davis made two more 3-pointers to make it 99-60 going into the final period. He sank a 3 during an 11-0 run by Seattle that gave the Sonics a 71-38 lead. His 3-pointer with 6:36 remaining in the third quarter put Seattle in front 78-39.
Doc Rivers, Orlando's first-year coach, didn't have any idea what went wrong.
"It's a long trip from Florida," he said. "Maybe that might have had something to do with it. We just couldn't get anything going."
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