I agree there's a lot of whining going on here.
Here's some things to consider:
The game has slowed down across nearly all surfaces over the course of the last decade, either due to changes in the surface, the racquets, the strings, the balls used, combinations of all these have made points longer, rallies longer and harder on the body due to the continued shift to hardcourt. This is something that has suited the players and at times, they have demanded this process continue - witness the change to Paris a couple of years ago which they admitted was pretty much done because Federer and Nadal did not like the surface.
If they want to reduce wear and tear then they need to be looking to develop more aggressive play styles but they also need to be pushing for at least SOME of the tour to be about faster playing conditions - quick surfaces, lighter balls, whatever - that encourage and reward faster play. It can be done. Paris last year is an example where the surface was unusually quick and led to some very entertaining tennis.
The ranking structure needs to change. Best of 18 as it currently is, with the conditions on the top players, means they are pretty much mandated to play 4 slams, 8 masters, 4 500 and 2 250 events, or risk being disadvantaged compared to their rivals. This is now too rigid. It's also worth keeping in mind that all these tournaments want guaranteed big names - as big as they can get. To be a top player is to be under pressure to deliver for the tour at all levels, not just the slams, but the 250s as well. In some cases they need to learn to say no better but it would be easier if they did something about appearance fees and adjusted the requirement to play 18 tournaments.
The complaints about Davis Cup scheduling have been nothing new but the current schedule is entirely of the players own making - they pushed for these week-after-slam dates in the first place and people like Federer and Nadal were at the forefront of that so Nadal's complaints last week come off more than a little stupid.
They should be doing more anyway to promote more than the top 4 - sometimes you'd be forgiven for thinking that the rest of the tour is irrelevant, they need to share the wealth and the recognition lower down the social scale.
Yes good points. You get the impression some players would breathe a sigh of relief if the Davis Cup disappeared altogether.
Clearly we need fewer hard-court events & in particular, fewer slow hard-court events. That means more tournaments on grass, clay, & fast indoor surfaces, preferably carpet. If players don't like it - develop some fucking technique
, arseholes, & learn to hit winners & volleys. You're meant to be a fucking tennis player not a steeplechase runner you twat.
But surface changes aside, my main and most radical suggestion is this:
Simplify the calendar, not by scrapping tournaments, but by getting rid of all mandatory tournaments except the slams, the Davis Cup, & the WTF (for those who qualify).
Count the best 14 tournaments (1 of them Davis Cup for players selected) in a player's 52-week ranking. It's entirely up to the player if he wants to play any or all of the so-called "Masters" tournaments, up to the player if he wants to play the clay season (apart from R.G.) or indoor season (apart from WTF if he qualifies). Top players could play fewer tournaments, lower-ranked players could still play as many as they liked. Yes, the best players might come together less often, but it would be more special when they did. Davis Cup would be properly protected. Low-ranking tournaments with some other raison d'etre wouldn't even miss out on the top players. Instead of an arbitrary, top-down season structure forcing players' hands, players would be able to show which tournaments they actually valued, & the season could be periodically adjusted accordingly.