Orlando Magic guard Terrence Ross is set to enter his seventh season with the team. Time has flown by since Orlando acquired him via trade from the Toronto Raptors in 2017. Now, the 31-year-old is the oldest player on a Magic team looking to climb out of the NBA gutter.
But since his arrival, he's made a name for himself with the franchise, as the 12-year vet currently sits at No. 8 all-time in Magic franchise history for 3-point makes (636), a ranking that will most certainly change this season as he sits just 22 makes behind Rashard Lewis with the long-shot attempt of catching Hedo Türkoglu at No. 5 all-time with 794 makes.
2021-22 Season Review
A born-and-bred sixth man that hasn't lost his high-flying bounce, Ross didn't start a single game in 63 appearances last season, averaging 10 points, 2.6 rebounds, and 1.8 assists.
But nothing really went right for the Magic last season. Add Ross' shooting efficiency to that list.
Ross shot a career-low from the floor (39.7) and from 3-point range (29.7). A veteran shooter that can find any way to buy a bucket, Ross' pockets were empty from 3-point range. His career-low percentage from deep was even more eye-popping considering he only took the fifth-most attempts on the team and didn't surpass 70 games played.
Still, Ross had a strong winter. From a 108-103 win over the Denver Nuggets on Dec. 1 to a 116-109 win over the Charlotte Hornets on Jan. 14, Ross scored less than 10 points just once over a 14-game stretch. However, in between the two wins, the Magic lost every game that Ross appeared in.
But his impressive stretch of play included a 33-point performance in an overtime loss against the Boston Celtics. He followed this up exactly a week later with 32-point outing in a two-point loss to the Washington Wizards.
2022-23 Season Preview
Despite an inefficient year, one could argue that Ross' presence for a young and budding Magic team is more valuable now than ever before.
With fellow veteran Gary Harris, the team's second-oldest player, set to miss some time to begin the season after tearing his meniscus in the offseason, Ross is now tasked with filling the veteran void Harris leaves open.
While it remains obvious that Ross' veteran presence will be vital for the growth of No. 1 overall pick Paolo Banchero, his experience could play an even more crucial role for the development of second-round rookie Caleb Houstan, whose sharp-shooting skillset could take a huge leap with Ross' guidance.
Of course, Ross will be there to be a bucket-getter off the bench whenever coach Jamahl Mosley needs it. But for a team that's still rebuilding regardless of the talent, his leadership and experience will be most crucial for Orlando during the 2022-23 season.
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