Magic announce plans to open Hall of Fame at Amway Center

ORLANDO, Fla. — The Orlando Magic, which just embarked on its 25th season in the NBA, announced Friday plans to create a Hall of Fame honoring players and team officials for their contributions to the franchise’s history.

The exhibit will be inside the Amway Center and designed so fans can view the displays on game nights. Among those in attendance for the announcement were Pat Williams and Nick Anderson, who might be the likeliest candidates for whenever the first inductions take place.

Williams, now a senior vice president, led the drive to bring an expansion team to Orlando and served as the Magic’s general manager from their inception until April 1996. Anderson was the first player drafted by them in 1989 and is the team’s all-time leader in games played (692) and steals (1,004). Until Jameer Nelson this season, Anderson was the only player to have spent 10 years with the Magic.

“I think it’s going to be so enjoyable for our fans,” Williams said. “And personally it will mean a lot to me seeing a lot of the guys that I was a part of drafting or trading for. It will be great fun.”

Anderson, now a community ambassador for the Magic, will be honored next Friday night at the Magic’s game against the Boston Celtics in a fashion similar to how Tracy McGrady is scheduled to be recognized during their home opener against the New Orleans Pelicans.

Whether the Magic will retire their jersey numbers or those worn by anyone else is unclear. The only number the franchise has ever retired is 6, in honor of the fans as “the sixth man.” The No. 25 made famous by Anderson was worn recently for two seasons by backup guard Chris Duhon, while the No. 1 of McGrady — which Penny Hardaway had popularized with the Magic during the 1990s — is now worn by Doron Lamb.

When the Magic acquired forward Tobias Harris in February from the Milwaukee Bucks, he caused a small stir by choosing the No. 12 which formerly belonged to Dwight Howard, their all-time leader in points and rebounds. And the No. 32 once synonymous with Shaquille O’Neal was the jersey number this preseason of Kris Joseph, a forward who was one of the Magic’s final roster cuts.

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