SAN ANTONIO — The text messages and calls flood Solomon Jones' cell phone.
We support you.
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We believe in you.
Jones, a power forward and center who grew up in the Orlando suburb of Mount Dora, is trying to earn a regular-season roster spot with the Orlando Magic.
"Every day, my grandfather, my mother and father, they tell me they're praying for me," Jones said. "That's big, just having that support, and it's right there locally. It helps me. It lifts my spirits knowing that they have my back."
Jones may have earned that precious spot.
In almost 16 minutes per game this preseason, he's averaged 4.5 points, 3.8 rebounds and 1.3 steals per game.
Magic officials think he can provide some depth on the interior as another option at center behind starter Nik Vucevic and second-year player Kyle O'Quinn. Jones also could help at power forward, where the team is deeper.
"He plays with a lot of energy," coach Jacque Vaughn said. "He's been in the league before. He can make shots. He makes the right pass. He just plays tough basketball for us."
NBA teams may carry a maximum of 15 players on their regular-season rosters.
For now, it appears that 14 of the Magic's spots are spoken for.
That 14-player tally includes Hedo Turkoglu, who won't play for the team this season and eventually will be bought out of his current contract or waived outright or traded.
If Turkoglu's situation isn't resolved in the next few days — or if the Magic don't make another move — then Jones, second-round pick Romero Osby and training-camp invitees Manny Harris, Kris Joseph and Mickell Gladness will compete for the one available spot.
The Magic will finish their preseason Friday night against the New Orleans Pelicans, and regular-season rosters must be set for opening day by Monday at 5 p.m.
Jones, a 29-year-old Mount Dora High and USF alumnus, endured this kind of career suspense before.
He's played in a total of 270 NBA regular-season games for five franchises: the Atlanta Hawks, the Indiana Pacers, New Orleans, Los Angeles Clippers and New York Knicks.
None of those teams, of course, are his hometown team.
Jones grew up rooting for the Magic. He attended one game as a fan, and he still has that ticket in a glass case in his home.
This offseason, Magic officials told him he would have a legitimate chance to make the roster. The team would benefit from having an additional rim protector and rebounder.
He shed weight from his wiry 6-foot-10 frame to prepare for this chance, dropping to 230 pounds.
"I brought my energy level to a whole other notch," Jones said. "With that, I'm able to try to be everywhere on the floor and try to cause some havoc. I think that's been a difference this season compared to most seasons. I'm in great shape."
Jones has made an impression — not just with his energy level but also with his poise on the court.
"I love having him as a teammate right now," swingman Arron Afflalo said. "He plays extremely hard. We don't have a whole lot of veteran presences around, so it's good to get one in here, and he's done a great job this preseason for sure."
firstname.lastname@example.org. Read his blog at OrlandoSentinel.com/magicblog and follow him on Twitter at @JoshuaBRobbins.