Ben Simmons, the Nets’ star, is ready to return to the lineup after missing four straight games due to left knee soreness.
The Nets kept him out of Monday’s game against the Los Angeles Clippers solely so that he could play in the second game of a back-to-back against the Phoenix Suns on Tuesday.
“Ben is actually available and could play tonight, but he isn’t going because he won’t play back to back,” Vaughn said ahead of Monday’s game. “He is highly probable, or he probably will go tomorrow night. So that’s the way it works.”
The ability of Simmons to play in both games of a back-to-back has been called into question. He left the second game of a back-to-back against the Detroit Pistons after taking a shot to the eye, only to be ruled out shortly after by team doctors due to left knee soreness.
Simmons’ left knee flared up for the second time in two games in two nights. In November, he also suffered a lateral left calf strain in the second game of a back-to-back against the Orlando Magic.
Simmons has a game average of seven points, six rebounds, and six assists.
THE IRVING DEAL HAS BEEN ANNOUNCED
The Brooklyn Nets issued a press release announcing the completion of the blockbuster trade that sent star guard Kyrie Irving to the Dallas Mavericks in exchange for ex-Net Spencer Dinwiddie, forward Dorian Finney-Smith, and draught compensation.
Irving’s name was not mentioned once in general manager Sean Marks’ statement.
“We’re thrilled to add Spencer and Dorian to our roster while also securing draught compensation that will increase our flexibility in the future,” Marks said. “Spencer is a dynamic, multi-talented guard with whom we are familiar from his previous stint in Brooklyn. Dorian is a seasoned wing who contributes perimeter shooting and defensive versatility to our team. The two players will complement our roster and provide the team with proven veteran talent.”
Dinwiddie was the Nets’ point guard when current starting centre Nic Claxton was a rookie in 2019-20.
Claxton expressed excitement at the prospect of reuniting with his former teammate.
“My first year with Spence was beneficial to me,” he said. “He really looked for me out on the court, and now I’m 10 times better than I was then. So I’m looking forward to playing with him, which will be enjoyable.”
Claxton stated that he and Dinwiddie had a summer romance.
“We don’t talk every day, but he’s a guy who knows everything here and the staff,” he explained. “It will be a perfect fit.”