Injured Simmons ‘close or ready’ to NBA return

Philadelphia 76ers All-Star Ben Simmons will more than likely be ready to lead the 76ers on a play-off charge if the season resumes.

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May 6, 2020 - 10:09 AM

The Philadelphia 76ers' Joel Embiid (21) talks with teammate Ben Simmons (25) during a game against the Oklahoma City Thunder on Jan. 19, 2019, at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia. Photo by Tim Tai/Philadelphia Inquirer/TNS

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Philadelphia 76ers All-Star guard Ben Simmons is closer to getting cleared to play, should the NBA season resume.

The league leader in steals was sidelined with nerve issues in his lower back when the season was suspended on March 11 because of the coronavirus pandemic. He is allowed to rehabilitate at the 76ers’ practice facility in Camden, New Jersey, but there seemed to be no guarantee he would have been cleared to play in time for a playoff run.

“We’ve took our time, we’ve been methodical and thoughtful about his recovery and rehab, just to make sure, because we weren’t in a rush,” 76ers GM Elton Brand said Tuesday. “It’s hard to speculate. He’s been working hard and I know he’d be close or ready.”

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