Report: Ben Simmons Is Doing ‘Light On-Court Workouts’ And The Hope Is He Can Return For The Playoffs

With just a week or so remaining in the 2021-22 NBA regular season, Brooklyn Nets star Ben Simmons has yet to suit up. Initially, he sat out with the Philadelphia 76ers because he was mentally unready to play. Since being dealt to Brooklyn in mid-February, he’s intended to ramp up toward a season debut, though it’s been interrupted by a lingering back injury.

According to Shams Charania of The Athletic, Simmons “has resumed light on-court workouts” and the goal is that he can progress for a “potential return in time for the playoffs.”

“The Nets and Simmons have worked together on managing his back issues, which flared up when he was previously aiming for a mid-March return,” Charania says.

Simmons joining this Nets team would provide some much-needed defensive versatility at the point-of-attack. Brooklyn’s offense has been potent since Kevin Durant returned from injury in early March, but its defensive execution remains highly inconsistent. Simmons is a two-time All-Defensive Team honoree and finished second in Defensive Player of the Year voting a season ago.

The Nets are currently 40-37 and tied for the eighth seed out East. They’re two games back of the seventh-seeded Cleveland Cavaliers and 4.5 back of No. 6 Toronto. Aside from some miracle circumstances, the play-in is locked into their plans this season. They’ll be dangerous regardless of Simmons’ status, but his presence would only further improve them on both ends.