Playoffs 2021

NBA Playoffs 2021: LeBron James reflects on first-ever first-round series loss in playoff career

With a comfortable wire-to-wire 113-110 Game 6 victory, the Phoenix Suns eliminated the defending champion Los Angeles Lakers.

The 4-2 series loss was LeBron James' first-ever in the first round of the playoffs, snapping his streak of 14 straight playoff victories in the first round dating back to 2006.

"Records, if that's a record or if it's not, they are always meant to be broken," James said postgame.

"In that fashion, it doesn't matter to me as far as not making it out of the first round. What matters to me is getting this team back healthy."

Even though the final score might not say so, James and the Lakers didn't let up easy.

They came out after halftime, after trailing by as many as 29 in the first half, and brought the deficit to as few as 10 but could never pull into single digits and make a game-changing run.

"Monty Williams, Book and that team, they were excellent throughout the series," James said postgame. "All of them, much respect.

MORE: Offseason Outlook - What's next for the Lakers?

Devin Booker led from Suns from the front in this one, erupting for a playoff career-high 47, 22 of which came in the first quarter.

The loss makes the Lakers the seventh defending champ to bow out of the following postseason in the first round.

"The one thing that bothers me more than anything is we never got to see our full team," James said, reflecting on the season and looking ahead. "Time to readjust and see what the offseason has in store," James said looking ahead.

Calling this season 'draining' after the short offseason, the four-time NBA Champion also admitted that his ankle 'never got back' to where it was prior to the injury.

The views on this page do not necessarily reflect the views of the NBA or its clubs.

More from NBA.com

NBA Foundation grantee spotlight: The Collective Blueprint
NBA Foundation grantee spotlight: The Collective Blueprint
NBA.com Staff
Jaren Jackson Jr., Kevin Porter Jr. and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander are among the leading MIP candidates for 2021-22 NBA season
Our picks for this season's Most Improved Player
NBA.com Staff
Washington Wizards trade acquisitions from the 2021 offseason
Wizards depth chart for 2021-22 season
Yash Matange
Washington Wizards
Are retooled Wizards ready to take next step?
Yash Matange
Toronto Raptors rookie Scottie Barnes
Raptors rookie Barnes says he 'couldn't be happier'
Scott Rafferty
Bradley Beal and Spencer Dinwiddie will play a big part in the Washington Wizards' hopes of reaching the postseason in the Eastern Conference.
What to make of the new-look Wizards
Kane Pitman
More News