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Brooklyn Nets Trying to Stay Afloat Without Ben Simmons

5 mins read

With a current record of seven wins and eight losses, the Brooklyn Nets are somewhere in the middle in the NBA. Their team has many notable players with one of them being Ben Simmons, the former Rookie of the Year and number one overall draft pick in 2016. He’s been a polarizing player since joining the team.

In 2022, the Nets were struggling with their season and keeping former All-Star James Harden happy. In a blockbuster trade, the Nets traded James Harden and Paul Millsap to the Philadelphia 76ers for Ben Simmons, Andre Drummond, Seth Curry, and a first-round pick. 

Simmons, throughout his time with the Brooklyn Nets, he has been on and off the injured list. As of now, he is on the injured list with nerve infringement at the lower back left side of his back. Throughout his career, Ben Simmons has had a history of injuries with his knee and back. A broken right foot cost him his entire rookie year in 2016. Today, though, the starting point guard has missed seven straight games for the Nets due to a back injury. Within those seven games, the Brooklyn Nets have gone 4-3 without him. 

The first game that Ben Simmons missed was the game against the Boston Celtics. His presence was surely missed on the court as the rest of his teammates struggled to keep up with the new-look Celtics and ended up losing. Their three-game winning streak was snapped.

With the loss of Simmons, the Nets’ fastbreak percentage dropped without Simmons’ control of the ball. Currently, Simmons is averaging around seven points, eleven rebounds, and eight assists per game. He commands the fastbreak, often grabbing a rebound and bringing it up the court to find an open man or take it all the way himself.

This was shown in the opening three games of the season. 

Simmons contributed four points, ten rebounds, and nine assists in a loss against the Cleveland Cavaliers in the season opener. However, Simmons continued to show his talent as the point guard with a double double against the Dallas Mavericks, coming up two assist shy of a 10-10-10 statline. Despite the loss, the Nets were able to bounce back and defeat the Charlotte Hornets 133-121. Simmons contributed 11 points, 10 rebounds, and eight assists to add to Mikal Bridges’ 24 points and Cam Thomas’ 33 points. It was clear that Simmons was able to push the pace and move the ball around to help the team dynamic. 

Without these statistics in the past few games, the team has to rely on other players to help secure the win. The team has had to shift to players not used to setting the pace offensively, such as Mikal Bridges and Cameron Johnson. 

In the last game that Simmons played, the team narrowly lost to the Milwaukee Bucks on November 6th. Simmons ended with 15 rebounds, four assists, and two points in 33 minutes. Simmons’ contributions along with Mikal Bridges’ 31 points and Cam Thomas’ 45 points was no match for Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Bucks. 

Following the loss against the Bucks, the team bounced back without Ben Simmons to defeat the LA Clippers in a 100-93 win. A huge team effort with almost every player that played within double digits of points secured the win. 

Although the Nets are without their starting point guard, the other members of the team have continued to fill the missing role of Ben Simmons and are over .500 in the games without Ben Simmons. 

The Nets’ next game will be on Thursday, November 30th. There will be another re-evaluation within 7-10 days on Ben Simmons’ condition.

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