LOS ANGELES -- The Lakers' final game of the Bernie Bickerstaff era was a preview of the future under new head coach Mike D'Antoni.
It wasn't a masterpiece by any means, with the Laker defense allowing the Phoenix Suns to shoot 48.9 percent and score 102 points. However, the offense was relatively. a thing of beauty, especially compared with the first 16 games of this NBA season -- 8 losses in the preseason and a 3-5 record prior to Friday night's game.
The Lakers (4-5) ran the ball, put a ton of pressure on the Suns' defense and used the pick and roll whenever it was open to them, coming away with a 114-102 victory. At the end of three quarters Los Angeles had already scored 92 points -- more points than they were able to score in three entire regular season games and six of eight exhibition games.
None of the players would say the team is definitely back on the right track or that D'Antoni's system was starting to take hold. There were a lot of satisfied smile in the Laker lo...