Brooklyn Nets pour chilly water on Ben Simmons potential playoff return

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The Brooklyn Nets have poured chilly water on Ben Simmonspotential return in opposition to the Boston Celtics in spherical one of many NBA playoffs, regardless of a report claiming the Aussie will make his a lot anticipated debut for the staff.

ESPN reported the Nets and the 6-foot-11 former No.1 choose have been eyeing a return as early as sport 4 of the best-of-seven collection in opposition to the Celtics.

It is understood Simmons hasn’t performed five-on-five but however the report acknowledged the Aussie was anticipated to by the top of the week.

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Nevertheless, only a day after the report surfaced, Brooklyn star Durant and coach Nash performed down the Australian’s possibilities of taking part in his first sport in practically a yr.

“No, I am not anticipating him to play,” Durant mentioned after follow this morning (AEST).

“That is simpler for me. I am not placing any stress on Ben to return out and hoop. I am not anticipating him to do something besides get his physique proper and get wholesome as quick as he can. I am making ready as if we’re taking part in with the staff we’ve.”

Nash mentioned Simmons remains to be doing particular person work as he recovers from a herniated L-4 disk in his again that required an epidural shot on March 15.

“Internally, we’re not sitting right here saying Ben’s returning on this collection. We’ll see what occurs,” the coach mentioned.

“It is as much as Ben. It is less than me or any of us. There’s an opportunity Ben comes again, there’s an opportunity he would not come again.

“For us, we bought to give attention to the group, assist Ben in his journey to get again on the ground, however on the similar time we do not have time to lose give attention to the group that is taking part in.

“Ben’s a franchise cornerstone, however proper now it is about supporting him bodily and mentally to get again on the ground, and training this group to place its finest foot ahead within the first few video games of the collection no less than.”

The No.1 general choose within the 2016 draft, Simmons hasn’t performed in a sport for the reason that 76ers have been eradicated from the postseason final June. His inclusion within the Nets staff for the reason that commerce with James Harden has been effervescent with Brooklyn struggling the second half of the season.

Nash understands the significance of getting Simmons within the staff and the stress he’ll take off the likes of Durant in defence, whereas taking a load of the point-guard duties, giving the staff one other level in assault.

The Brooklyn coach mentioned when the staff’s medical employees provides the Aussie the inexperienced gentle, he will not hesitate to throw him into the line-up.

“He is a brilliant proficient participant,” Nash mentioned. “I feel we might have to provide [it] an opportunity if he was wholesome sufficient to play.”

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