POSTED: Dec 22, 2012 7:56 PM ET
NEW ORLEANS (AP) — New Orleans Hornets guard Eric Gordon, who has not played this season because of knee surgery, has been cleared for contact practice.
No timetable has been established for his return.
Shortly before the Hornets were to face Indiana on Saturday, Hornets general manager Dell Demps said Gordon would begin full contact practice with the team next week and officials would monitor his progress.
"We're going to put him in situations [during practice] and will evaluate him," Demps said, adding that once he returns, "it would not be smart to play him 48 minutes."
Wednesday, Gordon he would return to the lineup by the end of December, but Demps only said, "I'm glad he said that." Gordon was scheduled to be on the Hornets bench against the Pacers, the first time he was appearing in New Orleans Arena since early in the season. He has been rehabbing his right knee in Los Angeles since Nov. 7.
Gordon's return will be welcomed by Hornets coach Monty Williams as he has watched his team enter Saturday's game against the Pacers on a 10-game losing streak.