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Will Tracy McGrady's jersey ever be retired?

Tracy McGrady. Noren Trotman/NBAE/Getty Images
When you think of Tracy McGrady playing basketball, which jersey is he wearing?

Is it the classic Orlando No. 1 in which he won two scoring titles and established the backboard self alley-oop?

Or is it the red No. 1 on white, the one he wore with the Rockets when he poured in an epic 13 points in the final 35 seconds to beat the Spurs back in 2004?

It's not an easy answer. And that might be part of the reason that McGrady -- for all his other-worldly talents -- may find himself in a unique group of NBA legends: in the Hall, but somehow not in the rafters.

It's looking like McGrady, despite entering the Naismith Hall of Fame on Friday, will not have his jersey retired by either the Houston Rockets, Orlando Magic or any of the seven franchises he played for.

"Tracy has been one of my favorite Rockets during my ownership and one of the greatest players in NBA history," said longtime Rockets owner Leslie Alexander. "I'm incredibly proud of Tracy's well-deserved induction into the Hall of Fame."

But what about retiring his number?

According to league sources, the Rockets have made no plans to retire McGrady's jersey in Houston, and revisiting that decision has been put on hold while the new ownership comes into place. Last week, Alexander reportedly agreed to sell the franchise to Tilman Fertitta for $2.2 billion. Currently, Trevor Ariza has been wearing No. 1 for the Rockets over the past three seasons. As of now, he won't have to find another jersey for training camp.

In Orlando, where McGrady is the all-time leader in points per game, the situation is a little trickier.

Unlike the Rockets -- who have retired the jerseys of Clyde Drexler (22), Calvin Murphy (23), Moses Malone (24), Hakeem Olajuwon (34), Rudy Tomjanovich (45) and McGrady's teammate Yao Ming (11) -- the Magic have zero former players whose jerseys hang in the rafters. But if you look up at the Amway Center, you'll find No. 6, which has been worn only on one occasion in its team history. And it was by Hall of Famer Patrick Ewing, of all people, in his final season.

But the No. 6 isn't for Ewing in honor of his four starts with the organization. No. 6 is a tribute to its fans. The Sixth Man. The Orlando Magic, as of now, have no plans to retire a jersey beyond No. 6.

But that doesn't mean the Magic won't be honoring McGrady. He could be the seventh member of the Magic Hall of Fame, which, starting in 2014, "celebrates great players, coaches and executives who have had a major impact during the team's history." McGrady would join three other players -- Nick Anderson, Shaquille O'Neal and Anfernee Hardaway -- in the Magic Hall.

But again: a spot in Springfield, but no retired jersey. How rare is that? This hasn't happened in nearly two decades.

Consider that there are 117 players in the Naismith Hall of Fame and only seven of those find themselves in McGrady's shoes: a lengthy Hall of Fame career (more than 600 games played) with the bulk of the work done for active franchises. (Louie Dampier, for example, shined for the ABA's Kentucky Colonels, which closed shop in 1976 during the NBA/ABA merger.)

The list: McGrady, Bernard King, Artis Gilmore, Chet Walker, Bailey Howell, Richie Guerin and Harry Gallatin. Only three of those names -- McGrady, King and Gilmore -- played in the 3-point era. Yeah, this is a rare phenomenon.

Author: Tom Haberstoh, ESPN
Source: http://www.espn.com/nba/story/_/id/20623418/hall-famer-tracy-mcgrady-jersey-ever-retired

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