Diagnosing LA Lakers’ Remaining Flaws

The Los Angeles Lakers are just seven games into the 2016-17 season, but they've already used more competitive lineups than the underperforming units they trundled out over the past three years.

This is a young roster with a handful of veterans under first-year head coach Luke Walton. The positives include a faster pace, more scoring and a better effort on defense. But there have been many mistakes that have lost them winnable games.

Misreads, turnovers and unnecessary fouls are expected bumps in the road toward betterment. But stunning wins such as Friday’s blowout of the Golden State Warriors are signs that something is going right again in Lakerland.

While early wins are welcome news, this is an evolving team that will have to battle against complacency.

"As far as the development goes, it’s good to see the progress continuing," Walton said after the Golden State game, per Mark Medina of the Orange County Register. "Now the fear is we beat Golden State. Do we come out on Sunday and think we’re that good?"

But Sunday came, and progress continued, as the Lakers upended the Phoenix Suns for their third straight win.

The team is 4-3. By comparison, it was 1-6 a year ago through seven contests. But achieving middle-of-the pack status isn’t a long-term goal for a franchise with so many banners. There is still much work to do, from diagnosing flaws and fixing them to keeping an eye peeled for acquirable talent.

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