Kevin Durant and the Phoenix Suns are 1-4 in their last five games. Their only win was on December 17 against the 5-23 Washington Wizards. The Suns’ 120-105 loss to the Sacramento Kings on Friday brought their record down to 14-14 leading into their game versus the Dallas Mavericks on Christmas Day.
Bradley Beal, Devin Booker and Durant have completed only one game together, as they have been unable to stay healthy. Beal, who missed the team’s first 19 of 22 games, went down with another injury on December 15 against the New York Knicks. The shooting guard is out for another few weeks.
It didn’t take long for rumors to come out that Kevin Durant was already looking for a way out of Phoenix. He hasn’t played a full season yet with the Suns, and many are already speculating that he’s going to jump ship again.
Adrian Wojnarowski had this to report concerning those rumors (via NBA Central):
“We talked to people in Phoenix and around that organization. They can feel the frustration with Durant. Part of that is the missed games by Bradley Beal. [Phoenix] was built around those three stars. The underwhelming supporting cast that comes from those massive trades for Durant and Beal that gutted the organization and left them having to sign memo players.
“They lack the assets, the draft picks and the trade capital to improve this team. … It’s something that they’re going to have to manage in Phoenix with Kevin Durant. We’ve seen it before.”
Kevin Durant hasn’t asked for a trade, but most will not be surprised if he eventually reaches that point. He did it to the Brooklyn Nets last season, which is why he arrived in Phoenix.
The Suns went all in by trading Paul for Bradley Beal. Unfortunately, the former Washington Wizards guard has hardly been able to play due to various injuries. Phoenix can’t also just retool the roster due to the massive salaries of their Big Three.
It’s still December, but basketball fans will be closely watching the situation in Phoenix.
Kevin Durant and Devin Booker will be leading the undermanned Phoenix Suns against the Dallas Mavericks on Christmas Day
Bradley Beal isn’t the only significant name that’s not going to play for the Phoenix Suns against the Dallas Mavericks on Christmas. Starting center Jusuf Nurkic has also been ruled out for personal reasons. Eric Gordon, Josh Okogie and Yuta Watanabe are all probable.
Even if Gordon, Okogie and Watanabe eventually play, the Suns will still be undermanned against the Mavericks.
Kevin Durant and Devin Booker have been playing like All-Stars but they need the supporting cast to step up. Drew Eubanks, who will likely start at center, needs to do more on both ends of the floor.
Against the Sacramento Kings on Friday, Eubanks only had two points, two rebounds and one steal. Udoka Azubuike had a much better night, finishing with 11 points, 11 rebounds and two assists. Both must show up to give Durant and Booker all the help they need.