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In today's NBA, given the salary-cap constraints and extremely punitive tax penalties that have been instituted in the name of competitive balance, it is very difficult to stack the top of your roster without compromising depth. 

The Phoenix Suns opted for the old super-team route when they traded for Kevin Durant and Bradley Beal. As a result, Phoenix's bench, and even the bottom part of its starting lineup, is shaky at best, and with Beal having missed so much time, the Suns are treading water at 14-14, currently outside even the Play-In Tournament picture, entering their Christmas Day matchup vs. Dallas. 

Guess who's reportedly not happy with the roster? Durant. 

"You talk to people in Phoenix and around that organization, they can feel the frustration with Durant," ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reported on Christmas. "Part of that, certainly, is the missed games for [Bradley] Beal. This team was built around those three stars (Durant, Beal and Devin Booker). The underwhelming supporting cast that comes from those massive trades for Durant and Bradley Beal that really gutted the organization and left them having to sign a lot of minimum players to fill out the payroll. 

"And then understanding that [the Suns] lack the assets, the draft picks, the trade capital, to go out and really improve this team," Wojnarowski continued. "This is something they're going to have to manage in Phoenix with Kevin Durant. You've seen it before. It's a stark reminder of how short of a window, and how this team has to win big, and they have to win big quickly, based on how it was constructed and having Kevin Durant still playing at an All-NBA level. And a healthy Kevin Durant. There's a lot at stake for this organization. It's gotta change soon."

When Wojnarowksi says "you've seen it before," he's clearly talking about Durant's history of getting antsy with his teams. In particular, he's referencing his time in Brooklyn, where he requested a trade, then took it back, then called for the coach and GM to be fired, then finally got traded to Phoenix anyway. 

Context is important. Durant wanted the top-heavy roster in Brooklyn with Kyrie Irving and, later, James Harden. Irving going off the grid was out of Durant's control, and playing with Harden comes with its own challenges, especially when Harden isn't engaged. 

Durant was the only one of the three that showed up and played great basketball consistently, so this isn't to suggest Durant is a diva. It's just to say, if he's not happy, he's going to voice it, and, eventually, he'll act on it. That's what we've all seen before. Phoenix certainly doesn't want his frustration to rise to that level. 

But to Wojnarowski's point, the Suns don't have the means to make meaningful moves. Their bench ranks 26th in scoring, and, now, Eric Gordon isn't happy with his role. 

"Early on in the season, it was better. And lately, there just hasn't been an emphasis [to get me more looks]," Gordon told Bleacher Report's Chris Haynes. "So, it's definitely different. Lately I haven't been getting hardly any touches really."

The obvious need here is for Beal to get healthy and stay in the lineup for a consistent stretch to see what, if anything, this team can be. Booker has been great as a playmaker, but having another creator in Beal will alleviate some of that burden, and obviously the rotations become stronger with one more high-end option filling out various lineups. 

Right now, if Durant or Booker go off the court, the Suns are operating at a minus-4.5 and minus-5.0 per 100 possessions rate, respectively, per Cleaning the Glass, and even that number doesn't totally paint an accurate picture. 

Still, even with Durant and/or Booker on the court, this offense can get pretty stagnant. It relies heavily on tough, self-created shots, and they are consistently scoring uphill in terms of their low-volume 3-point attempts. In a 3-point league, they are trying to win games with twos. Tough twos, at that. Durant and Booker are two of the best midrange players in the league, but it's still tough sledding. 

So the margin for error isn't what you might think a team with Durant and Booker should enjoy. They need Beal back in the worst way. Once that happens, then we can see if the team, and Durant's outlook, begin to improve. But it's not exactly early. We're about to cross into January. The West is a bloodbath. Phoenix has to get this thing going right, and soon.