Just a few hours before tip-off against the Orlando Magic, news broke that Ben Simmons has a nerve impingement in his back and is expected to miss some more time. While head coach Jacque Vaughn said they’ll check on him in a week, nobody can be too sure what the timeline will look like.
Here are a few main quotes:
1. Ben Simmons update
“Yeah, so he’ll be out for at least a week. You know, I had been telling you guys that he was day to day. I tried to give you as much as I can, as honest as I can. And Ben was day to day he was improving and got to a point where obviously he wasn’t playing, so we want to be extremely thorough. Had a MRI yesterday, which was read today which showed left impingement, left side impingement. We’ll look at him a week from now. He has been getting treatment, he’ll continue to get treatment. Hopefully response to that. He had been showing signs of being positive and leaning in the right direction. of feeling better. So hopefully, hopefully a week from now. Well, we can see some more progress.”
2. How is Ben taking the news?
“I tried to joke with him. He was getting treatment on the table. I just tried to joke with him, because we had texted each other a little bit. You know, these athletes, they want to play, and they want to contribute. And no athlete wants to be hurt. And this is not something he has asked for, not something that he wants. We were trying at the time to really get our group whole and healthy and form an identity together; and he’s a part of that identity. And Ben has brought an element to our team that is irreplaceable because of the style that he plays with and the things that he helps benefit our team in doing. So, again, I’m going to take a positive approach to this thing and hopefully a week from now he’s feeling better when we have an update for you guys. But no athlete wants to be hurt.”
3. As a head coach, how difficult is it finding consistency when a run-and-gun PG is in and out of the lineup?
“You know I’m gonna do with what I have. So that’s the first thing. So the dudes that suit up, we’re gonna figure out a way how to use those guys. But it’s two different teams. We were top-five, top-six in transition with Ben, bottom-five without Ben, better executing in the halfcourt without Ben, not with Ben. So it’s two different teams, and so I gotta get our guys to wrap our head around, we got to mesh this thing together where we’re not shooting late in the shot-clock and playing halfcourt basketball, can’t happen. We still need to push the pace, and that’s multiple ball handlers pushing the pace and getting us opportunities early in the shot clock. That still has to be who we are. But we do have to execute in the halfcourt to maximize each possession.”
Meanwhile, on the other big injury story, Cam Thomas provided an update on his rehab.
Cam Thomas says his rehab process is going well and is looking forward to getting back and helping the team.— Lucas Kaplan (@LucasKaplan_) November 14, 2023
Calls the play he got injured on “unfortunate, but it’s part of the game.” pic.twitter.com/m0SU9cVqMQ
“It’s frustrating. I was playing real well, helping the team. We were competing. I was number 6 or 7 in scoring at the time... But at the end of the day, everything happens for a reason. I’m just trying to rehab as best I can so I can get back to the level of play I was at.”