Paul Westphal scored 27 points tonight and the Phoenix Suns stunned the Seattle SuperSonics, 99-93, before 28,935 at the Kingdome.
It was the surprising Suns' third straight victory in this Western Conference semifinal playoff series. They had lost the first two games.
Phoenix can wrap up the best-of-seven series at home Sunday.
The steady Suns were forced to play much of the game with three forwards because of foul trouble. They made 15 straight free throws in the final 6:30 to preserve the victory, their first in Seattle in two seasons.
The Suns struggled to stay in the game most of the way, but finally took the lead for good on a 7-0 run midway through the final period.
Walter Davis, who had 15 points in the second half, converted a three-point play and then after a Sonics turnover, Mike Bratz scored on a 20-footer.
Following a Seattle miss on the next possession, Westphal converted two free throws. That gave Phoenix a 85-82 lead with 4:44 to play and the Suns never trailed after that.
The Suns got into early foul trouble as Walter Davis picked up two in the game's first 30 seconds. He had his third before the quarter was half over.
Phoenix Coach John MacLeod took him out and without Davis the Suns' fast break suffered. Phoenix was forced to play more of a slowdown game, to the Sonics' advantage.
Midway through the period Lonnie Shelton scored on a baseline jump shot and Gus Williams stole a Phoenix inbounds pass and scored to give Seattle a 16-11 lead.
The Suns came back, however, with six straight points, four by Paul Westphal. The other two came from Alvin Scott, who was playing for Davis.
That spurt gave Phoenix a 17-16 lead, but Seattle regained the advantage by outscoring the Suns 8-2 to take a 24-19 lead. Dennis Johnson had four of those points.
Mike Bratz scored the final three points of the period to get Phoenix back to within two, 24-22.
The Suns' foul miseries continued in the second period as two other players, Bratz and center Joel Kramer, picked up three fouls each.
The 6-7 rookie Kramer was a starter for Phoenix. For the second straight game because regular center Alvan Adams has a sprained ankle and did not make the trip to Seattle.
The Suns were forced to go to a make-shift front line of Truck Robinson, Gar Heard and Scott and that's when they got into trouble. Seattle steadily increased its lead to 10, 44-34, with 2:40 left in the half.
Fred Brown, who went into the game having missed 12 of his last 15 shots, made two straight 20 footers to help give the Sonics' the 10-point advantage.
The scrappy Suns kept plugging away and outscored the Sonics 7-2 to go into halftime down by only five points, 46-41.
Shelton led the Sonics in the half with 12. Dennis Johnson added 10. Westphal led Phoenix with nine points.
Williams scored on back-to-back fast break baskets to open the third period and the Sonics had a nine-point lead. But with Davis back in the lineup, the Suns looked smoother and then outscored the Sonics 8-2 to draw within three at 52-49 with 8:08 left in the period.
Davis scored two points after grabbing an offensive rebound and two more on a baseline jumper. He also set the pick for a Westphal jumper to spark the Suns.
The Sonics fell into foul trouble of their own. Jack Sikma picked up his fourth and Williams his fifth in the third period.
After a timeout the Sonics came out running set plays designed to work the ball inside. With a front line of Shelton, Johnny Johnson and Paul Silas and with Dennis Johnson working low, Seattle bullied its lead back to nine points, 64-55. Dennis Johnson had six points in that Seattle surge.
MacLeod always seemed to have a plan, however, to keep the Suns in the game and after the Sonics took that nine-point lead, Phoenix outscored them 11-4 over the remainder of the quarter to trail by two, 68-66, going into the final period.
Seattle was ahead 66-59 when Scott converted a three-point play and then a surprise full-court press forced a Seattle turnover and two free throws by Bratz. Another full-court resulted in another Seattle turnover and a press basket by Westphal.