Hol­i­day to make sea­son de­but Friday

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Pel­i­cans guard Jrue Hol­i­day will play for the first time this sea­son Friday night against the Trail Blaz­ers, GM Dell Demps said Tues­day.

Hol­i­day has been on in­def­i­nite leave since sum­mer to care for his wife, re­tired international soc­cer star Lau­ren Hol­i­day, who had brain surgery last month, just weeks af­ter giv­ing birth to the cou­ple’s daugh­ter.

Demps said he ex­pects Hol­i­day’s re­turn to be grat­i­fy­ing for Pel­i­cans play­ers and staff on both per­sonal and pro­fes­sional lev­els.

“He’s just a great per­son — just bring­ing him back and get­ting him back with the group, from a so­cial stand­point,” is most im­por­tant, Demps said. “From a bas­ket­ball stand­point, we don’t want to put pres­sure on him and make him feel like he’s the sav­ior.”

Celtics C Al Hor­ford re­turned to prac­tice but still is deal­ing with the lin­ger­ing ef­fects of a con­cus­sion he suf­fered dur­ing prac­tice Oct. 31 and is un­cer­tain when he’ll play again. The Celtics have gone 3-4 in the seven games Hor­ford has missed. ... Cavs GJ. R. Smith missed his sec­ond straight game with a sore right an­kle. Richard Jef­fer­son started in his place against the Rap­tors.

COLUM­BUS, Ohio — Cam Atkin­son scored 37 sec­onds into over­time as the Blue Jack­ets ral­lied to beat the Cap­i­tals, 2-1, Tues­day night.

Atkin­son buried a wrist shot off a face­off from the right cir­cle past Wash­ing­ton goal­tender Philipp Grubauer to win the game and ex­tend Colum­bus’ home win­ning streak to six.

Zach Weren­ski scored the ty­ing goal with just un­der seven min­utes re­main­ing for the Blue Jack­ets, and Sergei Bo­brovsky stopped 26 shots.

Nick­las Back­strom scored late in the sec­ond pe­riod for the Cap­i­tals, and Grubauer fin­ished with 20 saves.

Colum­bus started slowly, strug­gling to pen­e­trate Wash­ing­ton’s de­fense and get­ting off just 12 shots in the first two pe­ri­ods.

Back­strom scored his sec­ond goal of the sea­son when he skated through traf­fic and shot from the right cir­cle past Bo­brovsky’s glove side with 4:17 left in the sec­ond. The Blue Jack­ets tied it with 6:58 left in the third when Weren­ski rock­eted a wrist shot off the post and past Grubauer.

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