Filling out the Orlando Magic Hall of Fame — 2022 Edition

5 of 5
Otis Smith, Orlando Magic
TAMPA, FL – OCTOBER 22: General Manager Otis Smith of the Orlando Magic smiles on the bench before the game against the Miami Heat was cancelled at the St. Pete Times Forum on October 22, 2010 in Tampa, Florida. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by J. Meric/Getty Images) /

Filling out the Orlando Magic Hall of Fame

Borderline Cases

Otis Smith (1990-92 player; 2006-12 executive)

As a player, Otis Smith was an undersized forward with great athleticism. He once participated in the Slam Dunk Contest. He also holds game-winning shots over both the Los Angeles Lakers and Chicago Bulls during the team’s inaugural year. His playing career was cut short by an ACL injury.

As an executive, Smith was key in influencing Jon Weisbrod to draft Dwight Howard over Emeka Okafor and he put together the team that would reach the NBA Finals in 2009. He ushered in the best run in Magic history before it all fell apart.

There are plenty of things to argue about his time as a general manager — the misstep with Billy Donovan, his inability to get a second star for Dwight Howard and his handling of the whole Dwight-mare. But the success speaks for itself.

J.J. Redick (2007-13)

J.J. Redick is a sentimental favorite for sure among Orlando Magic fans. He was a hard worker who found his niche and had good timing as the NBA became 3-point happy very suddenly. Redick is just one of the good guys throughout the NBA. And his best years came in Orlando as he became a championship hunter (but never won one) after leaving the Magic.

Redick certainly has a strong case to make the Hall of Fame because of his longevity and popularity. But as a role player, you do have to rise above. Redick probably gets there. But there has to be a cutoff line somewhere and it might be with Redick.

Horace Grant (1995-99, 2002-03)

Horace Grant is one of the most consequential free agent signing in team history. Grabbing a championship-level player in free agency, suddenly the team had gravitas and prestige behind them to lift themselves to a championship level. That was a huge boost.

Grant was solid in his seasons for the Magic. But not stellar. His presence and experience were the most valuable things he provided. He probably should be in for the stories everyone tells about him and his impact on the team. But there is a good argument his play did not rise to that level.

Grant Hill (2001-07)

Grant Hill’s tenure with the Orlando Magic was disappointing, to say the least. In seven seasons with the Magic, he played in only 200 games (28.6 games per season!). Ankle injuries and failed rehabs just dogged Grant Hill and kept him from realizing the partnership with Tracy McGrady everyone envisioned. It hurt the Magic for a decade.

Hill will likely be the only Orlando Magic All-Star not to get into the Hall of Fame. He did some great work in the community, but his inability to play defined his tenure. And fans were as frustrated as Hill was, even if fans misplaced their blame on Hill for something that was incredibly random and unfortunate.

Terrence Ross (2017-Present)

As Terrence Ross’ tenure with the Orlando Magic gets closer to coming to an end — his desire to be playing elsewhere is still hanging a bit over the franchise — it is time to start thinking a bit about his legacy with the team.

Next. In the beginning, the 3 was not a weapon. dark

He has obviously been with the team for a long time. And he is extremely popular for it as one of the catalysts to the team’s brief rebirth in 2019. Ross is just a fun guy. He deserves some consideration for the Orlando Magic Hall of Fame. But it is obviously a bit of an outside case.