Ben Simmons injury update, Brooklyn Nets, return to court, knee pain

Ben Simmons, who didn’t play at all last season, is now out for the third time this season with a sore left knee.

The questions for the Nets now are: How much time will he miss? How many more times will it happen? And how will they adjust without him – again?

Simmons – who was forced out of the Nets’ win over the Magic with 9:03 remaining in Monday’s first half with the injury – has already been officially ruled out of the game against the Wizards. It’s the sixth game he’s missed this season.

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“So he had pain in his left knee, same knee. Asked to be taken out of the game,” said coach Jacque Vaughn, who didn’t expect the 26-year-old All-Star to have another knee scan.

“We’re going to examine him day by day, see how he reacts with a little treatment, see how it looks.”

The networks gave no details on whether Simmons had an MRI scan or when he would return. Simmons’ agent, Rich Paul, did not respond to text or phone messages.

After missing all of last season with both mental health issues and a bad back, Simmons, who was acquired by the Nets on Feb. 10 in the deal that sent James Harden to the 76ers, underwent a microdiscectomy in May to to repair an L-incident. 4 hard drive. He has since revealed that he also had nerve damage.

Now the aftermath of that injury on his right side, coupled with the strain of a full-time return to the game, is having predictable repercussions on his left side.

Ben Simmons is hired for more time on the sidelines. Ezra Shaw/Getty Images/AFPSource: AFP

“More than anything the accumulation of games,” Vaughn said, referring to the impact of the NBA grind on Simmons.

“He hasn’t had that many games in a long time.

“[We] talked to the performance team about it. We were warned about this just as these games are adding up. His cumulative load if that adds up, it really wears him out at times, the number of games we’ve just had with the minutes he’s played pretty high.

Unfortunately, the Nets are getting used to playing without Simmons.

The knee problem cost him four straight games from October 31 to November 5, as well as the November 13 loss with the Lakers.

“We just have to play smaller,” said Kevin Durant.

“He’s one of our greats out there.

“We’ve got to play a little bit faster, and we’ve all just got to do a good job of rebounding the gang and doing the little stuff when he’s not out there. So we’ve had practice with him not being in the line-up and we’ve been able to figure out a few things.

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Simmons’ recent absence was both brief and ultimately beneficial.

Before sitting out that game with the Lakers, Simmons had averaged 5.2 points, 6.2 rebounds and 5.9 assists — all career lows — and was the worst team at minus 43. Since his return, however, Simmons had found his best form as a Net.

In seven games leading up to Monday, Simmons averaged 13.6 points and his plus-29 was second in the nets. His 7.6 rebounds, 6.1 assists, and 1.6 steals were all team bests. Simmons finished scoreless in 11:24 against the Magic with four boards and three assists.

The Nets can only hope the problem isn’t chronic and that this latest break will prove as productive as the last.

“Health is paramount so we want him to be at his best,” said Kyrie Irving.

“I’m glad that our medical staff, the coaching staff and himself agreed that he would sit down in the second half to save him for important games in the future…games that we will need the most.

“But if he’s not out there, we don’t have our point forward, our point guard, who’s able to initiate easy opportunities to push the ball in transition; So we will definitely miss him in the line-up. Hope he comes back [soon]but if he copes with that, we just want him to get as healthy as possible and we’re going to find out.

This article first appeared on The New York Postand has been reproduced with permission.

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