Jason SmithShootaround: vs. Spurs

By: Jim Eichenhofer, Hornets.com, @Jim_Eichenhofer

Updates from Wednesday’s morning shootaround at the New Orleans Arena:

• Eric Gordon (left knee soreness) did not physically participate in shootaround and will not play against San Antonio. Hornets head coach Monty Williams: “The way I understand it, he’s going to be out indefinitely until we get some more clarity on what’s going on (in terms of the specific problem).”

• While discussing impact of Gordon not playing, Williams referenced some of the adversity that has been a constant around the Hornets since he took over in 2010: “(Gordon’s absence) more than a blow. It is what it is. But at the same time, you guys (media) have been here during my coaching tenure. It’s been like this. I’m well prepared for these kinds of experiences. It’s one of the situations where talking about it and complaining about it isn’t going to help it. It’s an unfortunate situation. I’ll give you guys information as I get it.”

• Austin Rivers will start at shooting guard in his official NBA debut. Based on Williams’ comments in recent days, the remainder of the first unit will be point guard Greivis Vasquez, small forward Al-Farouq Aminu, power forward Anthony Davis and center Robin Lopez. Williams on Rivers starting: “He’s a young guy. He’s 20 years old. He’s going to learn and get better. I’m sure he’s overwhelmed, but he’s not afraid. I’m sure he’s excited about playing.”

• In positive injury-related news, the other 13 Hornets players are all available. Jason Smith (shoulder) will be on the floor in a game for the first time since Oct. 7 vs. Orlando. He’s practiced the last several days, but was held out of the last seven preseason games. Smith: “We’ll see how the shoulder performs. So far, in the last couple practices, it’s held up pretty well.” Smith described the injury as a “bone bruise” and “subluxation.”

• Smith on being without Gordon: “There’s nothing we can do about it. We just have to go out and play our game. We got the chemistry going in the preseason games and tried to get healthy. We have to just go forward from this point on.”

• Smith on playing three games in the next four days to open the regular season (all against playoff teams from ’12): “It’s a great test for us. We’ll see what we’re made of early on. It’s something we have to deal with. There are going to be a lot of games this season. It’s not a sprint; it’s definitely a marathon.”

• Smith on opening on Halloween: “It’s going to be a crazy arena tonight. There are going to be some crazy costumes. It’s going to be a fun night.”