From U.K. Magic fans the message is FLAME ON T-ROSS! Terrence Ross, the Human Torch moved from the Magic to Phoenix but our respect remains. So as the Torch prepares to face the Orlando Magic as a Phoenix Sun for the first time we at Orlando Magic U.K. wanted to express our love, gratitude and utmost respect for everything he did as a member of the Orlando Magic for 7 seasons.
The Origins Of The Torch
February 2017 was the point Terrence Ross arrived in the 407. The trade with the Toronto Raptors saw Serge Ibaka exit Orlando. Whilst Ibaka’s time was a severe disappointment in the City Beautiful, T-Ross became a crowd favourite.
Ross was eighth overall selection in the 2012 NBA Draft by the Toronto Raptors. Ross arrived in Orlando as a Slam Dunk Contest winner in 2013 and putting up 51 points against the LA Clippers in 2014. This microwave scoring ability and having some highlight reel dunks would be a preview of what was to come in Orlando.
For most Orlando fans closing the door on the awful Rob Hennigan trade that was Ibaka for Victor Oladipo, Ersan Ilyasova and ultimately Domantas Sabonis was a relief. However the arrival of ‘The Human Torch’ would eventually play a huge part in firing the Steve Clifford led Orlando Magic into back-to-back playoff appearances.
As Orlando’s ‘sixth man’ T-Ross proved his value, earning himself a reputation as one of the NBA’s best in the role. First off the bench for Coach Clifford, T-Ross highlighted his scoring abilities. The Human Torch nickname was earned through an ability to seemingly ‘get hot’ at any given moment. It gave the Magic a much needed scoring threat from deep.
His production from the bench helped to propel the 2018-19 Magic into their first playoff appearance since the 2011-12 season. It also helped the Magic clinch their first Division title since 2009-10.
You can’t ignore what T-Flight-31 did that season, hitting 217 three-point shots. In doing so he became the first player to start every game on the bench & hit over 200 three-pointers. T-Ross was also fouled whilst shooting the 3-pointer the second most in the NBA, resulting in a 4 point opportunity or 3 free throws, where his efficiency is 87.5%. Ross averaged 15.1 points per game through the regular season, contributing effectively with 13.2 in the playoff first round elimination to eventual champions, the Toronto Raptors. Terrence signed a 4-year contract in July 2019 to stay in Orlando and another playoff appearance followed.
When the Magic decided to enter a rebuild in the injury-riddled 2020-21 season many expected Ross to follow Nikola Vucevic, Evan Fourner and Aaron Gordon out of Orlando. However, whatever the reason this did not happen. Being in a rebuild was surely not what he expected but T-Ross never caused a fuss in the media, in public or via his excellent podcast. It is a true testament to the character of Ross that he stayed in Orlando and provided a stable veteran presence to a young Magic squad.
Sadly, as the 2022-23 season progressed, it became evident that the Magic would be moving T-Ross. Ultimately, Ross was bought out and allowed to move on. The Torch signed with the Phoenix Suns, a move popular with many Magic fans, certainly in the UK community.
T-Ross played 349 regular season games with the Magic, putting up 12.7 points per game. There were aLos 10 playoff games, with an average 14.8 points per game.
T-Ross enters the Valley of the Sun alongside Kevin Durant. His great locker presence, that ability to “light the torch” or to throw down a highlight reel dunk will help the Suns in their quest for an NBA title. Adding Ross to a squad that also includes Devin Booker, Chris Paul and Deandre Ayton surely makes Phoenix contenders.
Showing The Love As We Say Flame On T-Ross!
We asked U.K. Magic fans for their words to pass on to the Torch. This is what some of the Orlando Magic U.K. community had to say.
- Gary Craggs: I will always see T-Ross as being as vital as Vucevic, Gordon, Fournier, JI and DJ in getting Orlando to the playoffs again. The excitement levels would always peak when Ross was ‘feeling it’ and it was truly something to me that he was the player who re-ignited my dad’s interest in the Magic when he witnessed T-Ross doing what T-Ross does. Good luck in Phoenix!
- Gari Clark: T-Ross, thank you for being a part of the Magic organisation and being such a productive part of the Orlando community, representing us with honour. You’ll always be welcomed back to the Amway and Orlando and this will always be your home. Good luck in Phoenix and thank you again for the 6 years in a Magic Uniform.
- Angus Craig: Thanks for everything TRoss. Was great fun watching The Torch flame on!!
- Paul Bacon: Thank you for always giving everything to the team, the community and the Magic fans. Let the Torch burn bright in Phoenix. Flame on T-Ross!
- Chris Page: Flame on Torch…flame the f*** on!
- Sean and Jacey: Dear Mr. Torch, your role in getting the Magic to the 2019 playoffs will never be forgotten by us, especially that road game in Boston. You and the team inspired us to book a last minute flight to O-Town and see the city covered in blue and white for the playoffs. It was one of the best few days of our lives and gave us fantastic memories and new friendships. Good luck in Phoenix and try not to light the torch too brightly when you come back to the Amway.
- Lewis Rushworth: Thank you T-Ross for all the great memories and your hard work and dedication to the team.
- Frazer: Started following the Magic around 16-17 so I’ve only supported a Magic team with T-Ross on it. You just always had that hope The Torch would light! Going to miss Jeff and David getting hyped on commentary when a few started to fly in. Good luck in Phoenix!
- Geraint Jones: The Human Torch…go and get that ring!! It’s been fun having you wear pinstripes, thanks for being professional and representing the City of Orlando! You’ll get loud cheers each and every time you return home to the City Beautiful! Flame on T Ross!
Torch; if you are reading this, from everyone associated with Orlando Magic UK, we thank you for the memories, the efforts and the time with the Magic. We loved it. Flame on T-Ross! Get that ring in Phoenix – you deserve it!
Co-written by Paul Bacon and Gary Craggs