Ben Simmons could make a return later in the Celtics-Nets series.
It’s still a mystery whether Brooklyn Nets guard Ben Simmons will play during the first-round NBA playoff series against the Boston Celtics.
But Simmons keeps practising and continues to progress as he tries to get back on the court. Nets coach Steve Nash told reporters that Simmons has been cleared for contact and that he went through some 4-on-4 workouts on Monday, according to ESPN’s Nick Friedell. Simmons, who is dealing with a back injury and hasn’t played in a game all season, is out for Game 2, but Nash wouldn’t declare Simmons’ status for Game 3 in Brooklyn on Saturday. Nash said the team is still waiting to see how Simmons’ back responds over the coming days, per Friedell, as the three-time All-Star continues to ramp up his recovery. Last week, ESPN’s Brian Windhorst reported that Simmons and the Nets are targeting either Game 4, 5, or 6 for him to make his Nets debut.
While the Celtics may have to deal with Simmons later in the series, they won’t have to think about him for Game 2 at 7 p.m. ET on Wednesday at TD Garden.