Insider Provides Key Update on Ben Simmons Return to Nets

ben simmons

Getty Could the Nets already move on?

The NBA world was left shell-shocked when the Brooklyn Nets pulled the trigger on a blockbuster trade that sent their All-Star guard James Harden to the Philadelphia 76ers’ for former number one overall pick Ben Simmons. The Nets executed that deal knowing Simmons had gone nearly nine months since he last played and would need a ramp-up period before he was cleared to suit up.

Simmons never made his Nets debut last season. Brooklyn got eliminated from the playoffs before he could return from a back injury Nets doctors discovered upon his arrival. But ESPN analyst Stephen A. Smith says he recently spoke to the Nets star, and Simmons assured him that he is ready to return this season.

“First of all, I want to applaud the Brooklyn Nets for finally doing something right as an organization,” Smith said during a recent appearance on the “Rich Eisen Show”.

“I spoke to [Ben Simmons] privately, he convinced me that his problems were very, very real… But he’s convinced me that he’s ready to go this season.”

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Seth Curry Warns of Challenges With Simmons Return

Upon his arrival in Brooklyn, doctors discovered Simmons had a herniated disc in his back. It was an injury that required him to have surgery in May. He expects to fully recover from his procedure and be a full go for the start of Nets training camp. But Nets guard Seth Curry warns that despite having corrective surgery on his back, Simmons’ return will still have its challenges.

“There are always challenges. Foremost, he has missed a whole season. It is going to be a challenge getting his rhythm back playing basketball,” Curry said in an interview with Australian newspapers, the Melbourne Age and Sydney Morning Herald, per NetsDaily.

“I don’t know specifically what he has been through, mentally – that’s hard for me to comment on – but having that year off, having that time off, of competing and playing five-on-five basketball is going to be just as hard … just taking some time and getting re-acclimated to playing high-level basketball, but he is a special talent, has all the skills. The Nets need him on the floor.”

Seth Curry: Nets ‘Need’ Ben Simmons

Simmons is not the only Nets player returning from off-season surgery. Curry and his fellow sharpshooting teammate Joe Harris also had off-season surgery to correct ankle injuries they incurred last season. With Harris and Curry returning to pair with Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant, the Nets will have a nice spread of three-point shooting, which will bode well for Simmons, an elite playmaker.

“He creates a lot of 3-point shots for his teammates. Obviously, it helps me a lot, to get good shots. The pick-and-roll game, the hand-off game, the two-man game … he is a good guy rolling to the rim and finishing. Defensively … he can guard a lot of positions,” Curry added.

“We are going to need what he brings to the table. Obviously, he is an All-Star caliber player. Obviously, he is trying to make the most of this off-season and get back healthy physically and mentally. Like I say, he had a year off, it’s going to be good for him to get back out on the court and get re-acclimated.”

Simmons has a lot to prove this upcoming season. It will be interesting to see if he can silence his critics.

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