The Boston Celtics will meet the Brooklyn Nets in the first round of the NBA Playoffs. After the Nets beat the Cleveland Cavaliers in the Play-In, they took the 7th seed in the East. This will be the second year in a row that the two teams have faced off in Round 1 of the playoffs, with Brooklyn winning the previous five seasons.
Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving combined to score 59 points in the victory over Cleveland. Those two alone make the Nets an offensive power. Boston has also turned into an attacker late in the season with the support of Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown. However, the difference between the two teams is in the defense.
Boston takes its place as the league’s top defense this season, while the Nets finish in tenth place. A big part of that is injuries, but regardless, the sheer talent difference on the floor alone is astounding. However, the Nets will likely receive some major reinforcements soon.
Over the past few days, there have been countless reports that the three-time All-Star Ben Simmons might be back in the first round. And based on Simmons’ recent Instagram Story post, he may be ready to hit the maple tree again.
Simmons .’s Cryptic Instagram Post
On April 14, Simmons posted an Instagram Story showing off his shoes, and apparently he’s on the basketball court. Included in the Story is an emoji with steam coming out of the nose, often associated with victory and/or hard work.
NBA on ESPN reposted the Story on their site with the caption, “Ben Simmons👀 IG Story.” Apparently, the post sparked conspiracy, as it was implied that Simmons might be preparing to return to court. Simmons hasn’t played in an NBA game since last season when the Philadelphia 76ers were knocked out by the Atlanta Hawks.
Since then, he has sidelined the entire first half of the season, was transferred to play for the Nets, and has had to deal with a herniated disc in his back. But based on his Story and some recent reports, it might not be long before we see Simmons back there.
Simmons . Profit Report
According to The Athletic, sources told NBA insider Shams Charania that there is growing optimism that Simmons could make his season debut in the first round of the playoffs. Reports indicate that he could be back soon after Game 3.
When asked, Nets head coach Steve Nash denied these claims, saying there was still “no update on the timetable” for Simmons’ return. However, he acknowledged reports that there had been “heavier progress” to the end of the year. He said Simmons made more progress last week than he did three weeks earlier.
Combine Simmons’ Instagram Story with various reports suggesting his return, and it may be inevitable that Simmons returns in the first round. His transition into the roster will be far from seamless, but at the very least, he will give the Nets a boost in defense.
https://heavy.com/sports/boston-celtics/ben-simmons-instagram-story-injury-update/ Ben Simmons shares secret post ahead of Playoff vs Celtics series