LeBron James, Lakers Eliminated by Suns in Game 6 as Devin Booker Erupts for 47

Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE via Getty Images

There will be no repeat NBA champion this year.

The Phoenix Suns eliminated the Los Angeles Lakers with a 113-100 win on Thursday to take the first-round series, four games to two, at Staples Center in L.A. 

Devin Booker erupted to score 47 points for the Suns, who won three straight to close the series.

For the Lakers, who edged the Suns by seven points in Game 2 and were more dominant in Game 3, LeBron James recorded 29 points but couldn’t lead the Lakers past a dominant performance from Booker. 

StatMuse @statmuse

Devin Booker tonight:

47 PTS (playoff career-high)
11 REB
8 3PT
15-22 FG

He is the first Suns player with a 40/10 playoff game since Amar’e Stoudemire in 2010. He is the first ever to do it with 5+ threes. pic.twitter.com/81kKQWWoNT


Notable Performers

  • Devin Booker, Suns: 47 PTS, 11 REB
  • Jae Crowder, Suns: 18 PTS, 8 REB
  • LeBron James, Lakers: 29 PTS, 9 REB, 7 AST
  • Dennis Schroder, Lakers: 20 PTS 

Devin Booker Gets It Done 

Phoenix didn’t make it easy for a Lakers team that was struggling to find offense in the face of Davis’ departure. They ran out to a 14-5 lead, then finished the first quarter with a 36-14 advantage.

The Suns were led by Devin Booker, who had 22 points—most of which came on six threes—by the end of the first quarter, tying a postseason record from the past 25 seasons (that Denver Nuggets star Michael Porter Jr. also met in his Thursday night outing). 

Bleacher Report @BleacherReport

Booker hits a FITLHY step-back over AD 😨 pic.twitter.com/gIyMqQY73G

Bleacher Report @BleacherReport

DEVIN BOOKER IS UNFAIR pic.twitter.com/Xn02450x0r

He continued the onslaught into the second quarter, when he logged his seventh three-pointer, a career-high. By the break, Booker had 33 of the Suns’ 62 points on 11-of-16 shooting from the field (7-of-8 from three). 

Bleacher Report @BleacherReport

Watching Devin Booker cook the Lakers pic.twitter.com/As6ZxdgBuw

His performance caught the attention of other stars: 

Trae Young @TheTraeYoung

Book locked in.

D’Angelo Russell @Dloading

Book might get 80

Donovan Mitchell @spidadmitchell

Book ain’t letting them lose this one

And made the rounds beyond the NBA: 

Russell Wilson @DangeRussWilson

Booker goin’ off!

JJ Watt @JJWatt

Book is COOKIN!!!

🔥🔥🔥#RallyTheValley

Elsewhere, Jae Crowder had 18 points while Mikal Bridges and Cameron Johnson each scored 10 to help stave off a late comeback by the Lakers, but it was largely Booker who led the Suns to victory. 


Anthony Davis’ Disappearing Act 

The Lakers struggled through the last two games after Anthony Davis was sidelined with a groin strain at halftime of Game 4. But the star, who was already dealing with a knee injury he sustained in Game 3, returned to the court for the must-win Game 6. 

He told reporters he was struggling with being helpless on the sideline while the Lakers were faltering: 

“It’s tough. Especially [Tuesday] night, watching the game and not being able to help the team on the floor. It’s the toughest part, knowing that I couldn’t contribute. My body just wouldn’t allow me to.”

But his return was shortlived. Davis lasted an unproductive five minutes before he departed because movement irritated the injury, according to a report: 

Chris Haynes @ChrisBHaynes

Source: Los Angeles Lakers star Anthony Davis (groin) did not injure his groin strain any further, but the pain intensifies when his mobility is tested.

Bleacher Report @BleacherReport

AD went back to the locker room after going down. pic.twitter.com/Z3POnG4Qws

Alex Caruso was also done early, exiting with an ankle strain after eight minutes. 

Without him, the Lakers had little going for them to compete with a high-flying Suns squad from the beginning. Their 14 first-quarter points were a new season-low for the franchise. 

They showed signs of life in the second quarter, heading into the break down 62-41. LeBron James had 14 points and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope had 11 at the break, but it wasn’t enough to put a dent in Booker’s breakout just yet.

That would come in the third quarter as the Lakers cut the lead to as few as 13. 

Los Angeles Lakers @Lakers

Stay with the fight.

(📺: @SpectrumSN & TNT) pic.twitter.com/u4EwsOO9dm

In the fourth, the Lakers pushed themselves within 10 points, but it wasn’t enough to keep their season alive, even with five different players reaching double-digit scoring. 


What’s Next? 

Phoenix gets the Denver Nuggets, who defeated the Portland Trail Blazers 126-115 to take their first-round series earlier Thursday.

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