Ben Simmons is trying to come back for Game 4 against the Celtics
Steven Ryan. Getty Images.
Cue the Undertaker's theme music, because Ben Simmons might be back from the dead. Shams Charania reported today (Wednesday, April 14) that the three-time NBA All-Star is looking to play for Brooklyn Nets between Games 4-6 (April 25-29) of the first round series against Boston.
Simmons has been out all season, first for the Philadelphia 76ers, and then the Brooklyn Nets after he was traded in a package for James Harden. It's been reported that he has dealt with mental health issues all season, before suffering a herniated disc in his back that set him back from playing for the Nets.
“I think Games 1 and 2 in Boston is too quick. I definitely think after that is when the window for Ben Simmons to return starts opening up. Even if he’s able to give them 15 or 20 minutes, that’s a game changer. He can move the ball, he can rebound, a lot can happen. I’m told he is very confident he will be back.”
What Simmons actually will look like after nearly a year off from competitive basketball is up for debate, but I'd be hard pressed to believe his cardio is up to snuff to guard Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown consistently in the NBA Playoffs of all places. Regardless, this has to excite Nets fans, and if Simmons ultimately does return, it's another aspect that Celtics coach Ime Udoka has to plan for.
The Celtics and Nets tip off Game 1 of the series at 3:30 p.m. ET on Easter Sunday. Simmons or not, have faith, Celtics in 6.