Ben Simmons injury update: Nets' star diagnosed with nerve impingement, to remain out


It doesn’t sound like we’ll see Ben Simmons for the remainder of the season, as the Brooklyn Nets announced Friday evening that the guard has been diagnosed with a nerve impingement in his back, which will keep him sidelined. Simmons, who hasn’t played since Feb. 15 due to knee and back soreness, has been in and out of the Nets lineup all season due to various ailments, but this most recent one has been the most lengthy, going on 15 consecutive games missed.

Per the Nets announcement:

“Ben Simmons has been diagnosed with a nerve impingement in his back after a reevaluation earlier today. He will remain out of action while we determine the best long-term course of treatment.”

The back diagnosis comes on the heels of Simmons having fluid drained from his knee while also

Watch Lakers vs. Thunder: TV channel, live stream info, start time

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Oklahoma City @ Los Angeles

Current Records: Oklahoma City 36-37; Los Angeles 36-37

What to Know

This Friday, the Oklahoma City Thunder are hoping to patch up the holes in a defense that has allowed an average of 116.3 points per game. They might have tired legs after a contest yesterday as they head on the road against the Los Angeles Lakers at 10:30 p.m. ET March 24 at Arena. Los Angeles will be strutting in after a victory while Oklahoma City will be stumbling in from a defeat.

It was all tied up 54-54 at halftime, but the Thunder were not quite the Los Angeles Clippers’ equal in the second half when they met on Thursday. Oklahoma City’s painful 127-105 loss to the Clippers might stick with them for a while. This matchup was a close 54-54 at the

Report: Kevin Durant could return for Suns on Wednesday vs. Timberwolves

Kevin Durant’s home debut for the Phoenix Suns might finally be drawing near. The 13-time All-Star and former MVP is progressing towards a return Wednesday from an ankle sprain that has sidelined him since March 8, per a report from The Athletic.

Durant has only played in three games with the Suns since the blockbuster trade that sent him to Phoenix from the Brooklyn Nets on Feb. 9. At that point, Durant was sidelined with an MCL sprain and did not make his return from that injury until March 1. 

After helping the Suns to wins on the road in Charlotte, Chicago and Dallas, Durant was set to make his home debut in Phoenix on March 8 against the Oklahoma City Thunder before slipping and injuring his ankle in pregame warmups. He has missed the Suns’ last seven games, five of which they have lost.

[2023 NBA Playoff Picture, Bracket: Updated standings, matchups, seeds]

Still, the Suns remain in fourth place in the NBA’s Western Conference, though they are just two games out of falling into the seventh seed and the play-in zone. That spot is currently occupied by the Minnesota Timberwolves — Phoenix’s opponent for Durant’s possible return Wednesday. The Suns only have six more regular season games scheduled after that date.

Durant has appeared in just 42 games this season but has been his usual superstar self when healthy, averaging 29.5 points, 6.8 rebounds and 5.2 assists.

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Lakers, Warriors sit atop Nick's Western Conference final playoff spot picks | FIRST THINGS FIRST

Nick Wright predicts the remaining of the Western Conference playoff picture, including which teams will earn the final spots and those that will compete in the play-in tournament, along with squads that are ‘played out.’ Watch as Nick decides where the Los Angeles Lakers, Golden State Warriors and Dallas Mavericks will finish.

21 MINUTES AGO・First Things First・3:49

Michigan G Howard to declare for NBA draft

5:25 PM ET

Michigan freshman guard Jett Howard will declare for the 2023 NBA draft, he told ESPN on Thursday.

“This was a great learning year for me,” Howard told ESPN. “It’s what I needed. It taught me how to play within a pro-style offense and be effective, to get out of my comfort zone, and play with other good players.”

Howard, the No. 16 prospect in ESPN’s NBA draft rankings, is rehabbing ankle injuries he suffered in both feet in Big Ten play, the extent of which wasn’t publicly known until the end of the season, when Michigan elected to sit him for its two NIT games after consultation with an ankle specialist.

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“I’ve had both ankles nagging for a while, so my dad and the coaching staff agreed with the specialist that it’s better for me to get to 100%,” Howard said. “I was only 50-60% for most of the

Doncic fined $35K for money reference gesture

2:52 PM ET

DALLAS — Dallas Mavericks superstar Luka Doncic has been fined $35,000 for “directing an inappropriate and unprofessional gesture toward a game official,” the NBA announced Friday.

Doncic rubbed his fingers together, in an apparent reference to money, while staring down a referee with 1.7 seconds remaining in Wednesday’s 127-125 loss to the Golden State Warriors.

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Doncic, who expressed frustration with several no-calls on his drives to the basket during the loss, was not assessed a technical foul for the gesture. He has 15 technical fouls this season, one shy of an automatic one-game suspension.

Mavericks governor Mark Cuban said that the team will file an official protest of the loss with the league office after confusion over which team had possession of the ball led to an uncontested dunk for Golden State late in the third quarter.

Coming out of a timeout, Warriors center Kevon Looney had a free dunk on

Suns coach Williams fined $20K for ref criticism

1:22 PM ET

ESPN News Services

Phoenix Suns coach Monty Williams’ complaints about the free throw margin in Wednesday’s loss to the Los Angeles Lakers have proved costly.

Williams was fined $20,000 on Friday for public criticism of the officiating, the NBA announced.

The fine stems from Williams’ comments ripping game officials and describing what he sees as a pattern of unfair officiating against his team in recent games. During Wednesday’s 122-111 loss, the Lakers shot 46 free throws to the Suns’ 20, outscoring Phoenix by 21 points at the foul line.

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“Where do you see a game with 46 free throws for one team?” Williams said. “That’s just not right. I don’t care how you slice it. It is happening to us too much. Other teams are reaching, other teams are hitting, and we’re not getting the same call, and I’m tired of it. It’s old. … I’m over it. Been talking

Mavericks vs. Hornets odds, line, start time: 2023 NBA picks, Mar. 24 predictions from proven computer model


The Dallas Mavericks (36-37) will try to get back to the .500 mark this season when they host the Charlotte Hornets (23-51) on Friday night. Dallas is coming off back-to-back losses to Memphis and Golden State, falling into a log-jam tie for eighth place in the Western Conference standings. Charlotte has lost five of its last six games, losing to New Orleans in a 115-96 final on Thursday.  

Tipoff is set for 8:30 p.m. ET from American Airlines Center. Dallas is favored by 14.5 points in the latest Mavericks vs. Hornets odds from Caesars Sportsbook, while the over/under is set at 227.5. Before entering any Hornets vs. Mavericks picks, you’ll want to see the NBA predictions from the model at SportsLine.

The SportsLine Projection Model simulates every NBA game 10,000 times and has returned well

Anthony Davis finds comfort in Lakers, LeBron, his health

7:25 AM ET

ANTHONY DAVIS SAT in the corner of his bedroom closet, overwhelmed.

It was a couple days after another injury threatened to derail yet another season for him, and the Los Angeles Lakers big man was at his breaking point.

“I’m like, shaking,” Davis told ESPN last week, jittering his hand to illustrate his state on that day in December. “I’m just so mad and sad at the same time. … Frustrated.”

While making a routine post move to score over Denver Nuggets center Nikola Jokic on Dec. 16, Davis felt a sharp pang, which indicated a complex problem in his right foot: A bone spur had fractured off the navicular bone, which was also suffering from a stress reaction. The crucial weight-bearing bone might have been chipped since his college days at the University of Kentucky, doctors speculated, but the bone bruise exacerbated it.

Davis rated the pain level at an 8

They said it! Jaylen Brown on his future tops NBA quotes of the week

9:23 AM ET

Jaylen Brown talks about the rest of his career and more from our NBA quotes of the week.

“We’ll see how they feel about me over time and I feel about them over time. Hopefully, whatever it is, it makes sense. But I will stay where I’m wanted. I will stay where I’m needed and treated correct.”

Boston Celtics guard/forward Jaylen Brown, on his future with the team, via The Ringer

“I was wide open and I wanted the shot. … I would’ve definitely made it, I wouldn’t have even hit the rim, it would’ve been all net.”

Former Miami Heat guard Mario Chalmers, on Ray Allen’s iconic 3-point shot in Game 6 of the 2013 NBA finals, via AM 560 Sports WQAM

“His dumbass coach just started calling his plays more.”

Los Angeles Lakers coach Darvin Ham, on forward Anthony Davis scoring 20 points in the second half of his team’s 122-111 win