Sixers news: Ben Simmons likely to be ready when season resumes
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Sixers’ Ben Simmons likely to be ready if and when 2019-20 season resumes

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The long NBA hiatus has been a blessing in disguise for the Philadelphia 76ers, as it allowed their star point-forward Ben Simmons time to recuperate from a serious back issue.

Per Sixers GM Elton Brand, the 23-year-old Simmons will now be ready when (and if) the 2019-20 season resumes.

“I give Ben and our medical staff a ton of credit for their hard work throughout his recovery,” he said on Tuesday.

“I give Ben so much credit for him working so hard throughout this unknown time. Fortunately, we’ve able to arrange for him to continue to get the treatment and rehab he needs during this hiatus. I’m very optimistic he’ll be able to play if and when we’re given that green light to resume…

“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. It’s hard to speculate. He’s been working hard and I know he’d be close or ready…  When I FaceTime him during his workouts and his treatments and I see him, I’d be highly encouraged,” Brand added.

Ben Simmons last played during the Sixers’ February 11 matchup and missed eight consecutive games due to a nagging nerve impingement on his lower back.

The Sixers (39-26) has dealt with inconsistency issues throughout the season, and the team feared Simmons could miss the entire playoffs. Philly is currently tied with the Indiana Pacers for the 5th and 6th slots in the Eastern Conference.

Simmons’ health, of course, would be vital for the Sixers team looking to bounce back from their tough start. The 6-foot-10 playmaker was named to the All-Star team for the second straight year after averages of 16.7 points, 7.8 rebounds, and 8.2 assists, and 2.1 steals.