The brief reign of the Los Angeles Lakers is over.
The Phoenix Suns eliminated the Lakers from the NBA. Playoffs on Thursday night with a 113-100 victory in Game 6 of their first-round series, ending LeBron James’s hopes of hauling the Lakers to back-to-back championships.
It is the first time that James, 36, has exited the playoffs in the first round — and it was a young, up-and-coming team that hastened his departure.
The second-seeded Suns, who are making their first postseason appearance since 2010, leaned on the inside-outside combination of Devin Booker, 24, and Deandre Ayton, 22, throughout the series.
“I just know they wanted to be in these types of games,” Monty Williams, the Suns’ coach, said before Thursday’s game. “And I think they haven’t run from the moment, run from situations.”
The Suns will now face the Denver Nuggets in the conference semifinals. The Nuggets eliminated the Portland Trail Blazers on Thursday.