Ben Simmons Ruled Out For Regular Season, Play-In Tournament


Brooklyn Nets guard Ben Simmons has been ruled out for the remainder of the team's regular season, and any possible play-in games, Nets Head Coach Steve Nash announced this morning. Simmons has yet to play this season since due to a herniated disc in his lower back. Although Nash only mentioned the play-in game, there is nothing pointing towards the idea that Simmons could be back for the first round of playoffs, as his rehab has been very stagnant and unclear. 

After a falling-out with the 76ers this past year that saw Simmons go as far as losing $19 million in fines for not showing up to practices and games, the 76ers finally decided it was time to move on from the former 1st overall pick and 3x All-Star, trading him to Brooklyn in a blockbuster trade for James Harden in February. In the aftermath of the trade, initial reports suggested Simmons was "close to returning" even stating he was at one point day-to-day, however that has clearly been dismissed at this point. Following an epidural in late March to alleviate soreness, there was some hope he could be nearing a return, but that will have to continue to wait.

Simmons has been present and "doing more" in practice, but Nash touched on this and described it as light shooting.

With just 5 games remaining in the regular season for Brooklyn, the addition of Simmons come playoffs could be massive. Despite both Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving now back in the lineup full-time, the team's lack of depth and defense has plagued them somewhat, both factors that Simmons could boost immensely. Assuming they make it past the play-in tournament, it will surely be extremely interesting to see how much noise this under-achieving team can make when fully healthy. Even without Simmons, many believe the Nets are capable of taking down one of the higher-seeded Eastern Conference teams that they will face. The addition of a 3x-All Star and 2x-All Defensive player in Simmons could be more than enough to lead them as far as the finals. 

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