Ben Simmons scratched ahead of Nets’ game with back soreness

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After a goalless game on Thursday night, Ben Simmons said he needed to be more aggressive to get going.

Instead, he got stuck with a seat on the bench.

After the Nets had a clean injury record on Sunday aside from having Kevin Durant sidelined with his knee injury, Simmons suffered a late scratch against the Thunder with back pain.

About an hour before the tip, the Nets announced that Simmons’ status had been downgraded to questionable. Then he was subsequently ruled out before the tip, and Edmond Sumner took his spot on the starting lineup.

Coach Jacque Vaughn, speaking before the game Sunday before Simmons’ status changed, had said Saturday that everyone except Durant was ready to go to the Nets’ practice.

Simmons underwent back surgery last May to repair a herniated disc that delayed his Nets debut until this season. He also missed 2020 with a nerve problem in his back.

Ben Simmons
Ben Simmons was scratched for the Nets’ game against The Thunder.
Getty Images

In the Nets’ first game without Durant (MCL sprain) on Thursday, Simmons racked up a season-high 13 assists, nine rebounds and two steals but didn’t score after shooting 3-0 from the field.

Sunday marked the 11th game Simmons missed this season. The others were left knee pain (five games), a left calf strain (four games) and injury management (one game in the second half of a tackle).

Simmons’ last injury came during a streak when the Nets had played just one game in the past six days.

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