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Report: Nets hoping Ben Simmons can return for a ‘couple’ regular-season games after latest injury setback

Yet another unfortunate delay to the All-Star’s 2021-22 debut.

Brooklyn Nets v Philadelphia 76ers Photo by Elsa/Getty Images

Since being traded to the Brooklyn Nets five weeks ago, Ben Simmons has yet to debut this season and is dealing with an “irritation of the L-4 disc of the lower spine.” ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported that Brooklyn hopes Simmons can play in a “couple” of regular-season games before the playoffs begin.

“There had been an original target for a return on Friday vs. the Portland Trail Blazers, sources said,” Wojnarowski wrote. “But that became impossible in recent weeks based on Simmons’ inability to go more than a consecutive day or two in rehab without pain flaring up in the lower back and resetting his timeline, sources said.”

Head coach Steve Nash told reporters Wednesday that Simmons received an epidural shot in Orlando, with the hopes of accelerating his recovery. In the meantime, the three-time All-Star is receiving treatment, strengthening his back and participating in 1-on-0 basketball activities, according to Wojnarowski.

If Simmons returns for Brooklyn’s final two regular-season contests, those would come against the Cleveland Cavaliers (April 8) and Indiana Pacers (April 10).