• Steve Clifford hasn’t written off the possibility of Cody Zeller playing on Friday, but it sounds more likely that his return would be during the four-game West Coast trip that starts on Sunday against the Suns.

    Zeller has already gone through two scrimmages to test the healing in his surgically repaired left knee. “It feels good so far. I did a little bit of 3-on-3 in Indianapolis a couple of days ago, and I did it again today,” Zeller said, following practice Tuesday at Philips Arena. The second unit continues to be a clear weakness for the Hornets, so his return couldn’t be more welcome, particularly with Marvin Williams out with a left ankle sprain. Unfortunately, Zeller’s upside is limited as long as Dwight Howard is healthy while the Hornets continue to push for a chance to make it to the playoffs.

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