Anthony Davis returns for Game 6, but exits in 1st quarter

Anthony Davis managed less than 5 1/2 minutes in his return to the Lakers’ starting lineup Thursday night before leaving in clear pain from his groin injury as Los Angeles faced playoff elimination in Game 6 of its first-round series against the Phoenix Suns.

After missing the previous 1 1/2 games, Davis suited up for Game 6 and attempted to play. But the superstar big man looked tentative and lacked any explosive ability while failing to take a shot, and he went down in a heap in front of the Lakers’ bench with 6:35 left in the first quarter.

Los Angeles’ medical staff attended to Davis and escorted him to the locker room. The Lakers said Davis was questionable to return to the franchise’s first playoff elimination game since 2013, which the Suns led 36-14 after the first quarter.

Davis missed the second half of Game 4 and all of Game 5 after the eight-time All-Star injured his groin last weekend at Staples Center. The defending NBA champion Lakers lost both games to fall to a 3-2 series deficit and the brink of an early postseason exit.