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    Washington Wizards Franchise Information

    Have a read on below at some quick stats and facts on the Washington Wizards to get you started: 

    Established:1961 
    Stadium:Capital One Arena 
    Colours:Navy blue, red, silver & white 
    Hall of Famers:Wes Unseld, Earl Monroe, Elvin Hayes, Dave Bing, Walt Bellamy, Bailey Howell, Moses Malone, Micheal Jordan, Gus Johnson, Ralph Sampson, Bernard King, Mitch Richmond & Spencer Haywood 
    Hall of Fame Coaches:Bobby Leonard 
    Rivals:Cleveland Cavaliers 
    Legends:John Wall, Elvin Hayes, Bradley Beal, Wes Unseld, Gilbert Arenas, Earl Monroe, Gus Johnson, Chris Webber, Bernard King & Antwan Jamieson 
    Retired Numbers:5: 10, 11, 25, 41 & 45 
    Conference: Eastern Conference
    Division:Southeast Division
    NBA Championships1: 1978 

    Washington Wizards History

    The Washington Wizards became the first expansion team to join the NBA in 1961, but it took 13 years before they settled in the nation’s capital city. The Wizards were formally entered into the NBA as the Chicago Packers (then became the Chicago Zephyrs in 1962-63). 

    In fact, they spent their first two years in Chicago, before being relocated to Baltimore where they stayed for a decade between 1963-1973 before the franchise finally called Washington home from 1973. 

    When the Packers moved to Baltimore another name change was on the cards as they became known as the Baltimore Bullets from 1963-73, and when they relocated to Washington they became the Capital Bullets from 1973-1974, Washington Bullets from 1974-1994 and from 1994 they rebranded themselves to become the Washington Wizards. 

    The Bullets drafted reasonably well in their foundation years in Baltimore as they drafted future Hall of Famers Earl Monroe in the 1967 draft with pick #2 and Wes Unseld who they also selected with pick #2 in the 1968 draft and the duo would have a key part in the Bullets history as well as having stellar NBA careers. 

    A few years later after acquiring the services of Monroe and Unseld, the duo would lead the Bullets to their first-ever NBA finals series in 1971, however, they couldn’t make much of it as they were swept by Milwaukee Bucks 4-0 in the series. 

    Midway through the 1971-72 season, the Bullets entered in a trade with the New York Knicks which saw Monroe go to the Knicks, while the Bullets would get Mike Riordan and Dave Stallworth in return. The Bullets made the playoffs during that season but fell to the Knicks in the Eastern Conference Semifinals.

    From there the Bullets became a postseason regulars, as they made the 1972-73 playoffs (which would be their last in Baltimore) but once again fell in the early stages. By the time the 1973-74 season rolled around, the Bullets left Baltimore for Washington and became known as the Capital Bullets, but once again they crashed out of the Eastern Conference semifinals after finishing the regular season in first place in the Central standings with a 47-35 record.

    The 1976-77 NBA season saw the Capital Bullets change its name to the Washington Bullets and after a few years without playing in the playoffs, the Bullets finally broke their three-year drought when they made it to the Eastern Conference semifinals, but like the previous few years, they couldn’t quite break that curse and fell to the Houston Rockets. 

    But the Bullets were just gearing up as the glory days were only around the corner for the Washington team. The 1977-78 season would be the biggest one they would have. The Bullets finished the regular season in second place of the Central standings with a 44-38 win-loss record, but despite the finish, it didn’t seem to bother them. 

    The Bullets made light work of their playoff opponents in the first round defeating the Atlanta Hawks in two games as they advanced to the conference semifinals where they have been undone since the 1972-73 season. 

    However, it turns out that this new breed of the Bullets was different from previous years as there was no sign of the conference semifinal curse that had eluded them in the past as they finally progressed defeating the San Antonio Spurs in four games. 

    They knocked off Philadelphia 76ers in the Eastern Conference Finals in four games, as they managed to make it to their first NBA Finals series since 1971 where they would meet the Seattle Supersonics. 

    From start to finish the whole series was a see-sawing affair as both sides never really dominated as by the time both teams went into game six the Supersonics were leading 3-2. It was make or break time for the Bullets, but there was no need to to worry as Greg Ballard and Bob Dandridge played an important part as the side came out comfortable winners to tie the series to 3 all defeating the Supersonics 117-82. 

    From there, the Bullets didn’t want to slip off the radar as Dandridge and Charles Johnson both played their hearts out as the duo hit 19 points to hand the Bullets their first NBA championship as they defeated the Supersonics 105-99 as well as winning the series 4-3. Unseld would become the Bullets hero as he was crowned the MVP throughout the finals series. 

    There was no sign of a “championship hangover” in the regular season as the Bullets ended the 1978-79 season on top of the Atlantic Division with 54 wins. In their first playoff series, they faced a bit of scare when they played the Atlanta Hawks in the Eastern Conference Semifinals when they defeated the Hawks in four games. 

    They faced another scare in the East conference finals defeating the San Antonio Spurs in four games. They made back-to-back NBA finals appearances and this time they faced the Supersonics again, but unlike the previous year, the Supersonics got revenge and won the series 4-1. 

    After the 1980-81 season, Unseld announced his retirement as he became the Bullets number one ranked player for games played as he made 984 appearances, played 35, 832 minutes and scored 10,624 points since making his debut in 1968. 

    That same year the Bullets traded out Elvin Hayes who was also a much-loved son at the Bullets to Houston. The Bullets would remain competitive throughout the rest of the 80s but would never repeat their NBA Finals triumph or even head to another NBA Finals as they often made the East first round, and only missed the playoffs altogether three times. 

    The new decade was turned to their attention of rebuilding and even though they signed Bernard King who fully recovered from a devastating knee injury to become an All-Star player in the 1990-91 season, it still wasn’t enough as they finished fourth in the Atlantic division with 30 wins. 

    Now in the 1994-95 season, the Bullets still hadn’t managed to find the same rhythm they had in the 80s as they hadn’t seen the playoffs since the 1987-88 season, but they were in high spirits when they traded out Tom Gugliotta for Golden State’s Chris Webber, but that was as high as the Bullets hopes went as they finished last in their division with 21 wins. 

    After being in the postseason wilderness for so long, they finally broke a big hoodoo in the 1996-97 season when they managed to make a playoff appearance with 44 wins in the regular season. Ultimately though the nerves got the better of them and they crashed out of the East First Round. They didn’t make the playoffs for the rest of the 90s. 

    By 2002 the Wizards (they changed from the Washington Bullets to the Wizards in 1997), shocked the basketball world when they convinced six-time NBA champion player and six-time NBA Finals MVP player Micheal Jordan to come out of retirement and play for them, but that wasn’t enough as they finished with 37 wins. 

    The 2002-03 season would be the last for Jordan in Wizards colours, but again he couldn’t help the Wizards to a playoff spot as they once again finished with 37 wins. The Wizards had some sort of mini success during the mid-2000s as they became a competitive team to play against from 2005-2008 where they finally saw the playoffs once again and were consecutive mainstays. 

    The 2005 season was their best throughout that time as they signed Antwan Jamieson from the Dallas Mavericks. The Wizards finished the regular season with 45 wins. It meant they had to play in the East First Round playoffs where they defeated the Chicago Bulls in five games. They met the Miami Heat in the Eastern Semifinals but fell to Miami losing the series 4-0. 

    A four year span from 2014- 2018 saw the Wizards back to their best as they became postseason regulars, only missing the playoffs once in 2016. In particular, 2013-2014, 2014- 2015 and 2016-2017 seasons were the best as they managed to get to the Eastern Conference semifinals, but fell to Indiana Pacers (2014), Atlanta Hawks (2015) and Boston Celtics (2017). 

    Since then the Wizards have missed out on a playoff berth from 2018-2020 which included the Wizards finishing in tenth spot with 25 wins in the 2019-2020 season. 

    The franchise finally decided to shake things up, trading long-time star, John Wall, to the Houston Rockets in exchange for Russell Westbrook. The thought was that Westbrook’s playmaking and physical style of play would compliment Beal and help the Wizards rise up the standings.

    They eventually made the postseason, losing to the Celtics in the first Play-In Game but then beating the Pacers in the eighth-seed Play-In game to qualify for the playoffs. Unfortunately they were no match for the Sixers, losing in five games in the opening round and leaving plenty of questions about the future of Beal, Westbrook and the franchise.

    Expert 2021-22 Picks & Preview on Washington Wizards

    After a disappointing end to the season, the Washington Wizards have abandoned the Russell Westbrook experiment and have retooled their team to try and make the playoffs once again this season. The Wizards have been a constant source of disappointment for fans as they never seem to break through despite the valiant efforts of Bradley Beal. After shedding Westbrook the team looks surprisingly better, but is this enough to make the playoffs and make it past the first round?

    Front Office

    The Wizards front office has been relatively patient despite the lack of success. They finally let go of coach Scott Brooks after posting 3 straight losing seasons. To replace him the Wizards have hired Wes Unseld Jr. as head coach. Unseld Jr. is a first time head coach and has worked in the league since 2005. Unseld Jr. actually started his career at the Wizards as an assistant where he helped make the offense a top 10 unit 3 seasons in a row. 

    Since then Unseld Jr. has worked for the Warriors, Magic and Nuggets. At the Nuggets, Unseld Jr. has been credited with the development of Nikola Jokic, Jamal Murray and Michael Porter Jr.. This is a good sign for the Wizards who have a bunch of young players who are looking to make the next step. 

    After going 34-38, the front office has made big moves to try to push the team to a winning season and back into the playoffs. The Wizards traded away Russell Westbrook and got Kyle Kuzma, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and Montrez Harrell in return. This is certainly a win for the Wizards who lack depth beyond their starting lineup. The Wizards also acquired Spencer Dinwiddie and Aaron Holiday. Although this definitely isn’t a championship roster the pieces are all there for them to make a good run at the playoffs. 

    The starting lineup of Dinwiddie, Beal, Kuzma, Hachimura and Bryant is solid, but what gives us hope for this team is the depth behind them, namely Aaron Holiday, KCP, Deni Avidja, Davis Bertans and Montrez Harrell. These 10 players are all solid and could be starters on other teams. The Wizards have surrounded Beal with defensive help in the back court which should lead to good results. The Wizards may surprise people this season and we think they win a lot of games toward the end of the season where depth matters.

    Key Players

    Bradley Beal is the centrepiece of the Wizards’ offense. Beal has been carrying the team for years since Wall suffered his bevvy of injuries. Beal has grown into the team’s number 1 option, averaging over 30 points a game in back to back seasons. Beal has also become a more capable ball-handler averaging a career high 6.1 assists per game 2 seasons ago. Although his assists numbers took a hit due to the ball-dominance of Russell Westbrook, Beal still averaged a respectable 4.4 assists per game. 

    Beal needs to keep playing at an All-NBA level to give the Wizards a chance this season. He will be handed the primary ball handler role once again as Westbrook is gone, and will need to readjust to take on the load. This season Beal will likely end up in the top 10 in usage rate in the league as he is the only real consistent offensive weapon on the Wizards starting 5. If Beal can’t adjust the Wizards will struggle. 

    The second most important player on the Wizards is Spencer Dinwiddie. Just 10 months after a partial ACL tear, Dinwiddie will now be thrust into a starting role alongside Beal. Although he won’t have the gargantuan offensive load that Beal will carry, Dinwiddie will be thrown right in the middle of the action. Dinwiddie will be the definitive number 2 option at the start of the season. 

    Prior to last season where he only played 3 games, Dinwiddie had a strong season averaging 20.6 points and 6.8 assists per game. Dinwiddie is also a solid defender which is a positive as he plays next to Beal who is a notoriously bad defender. Dinwiddie will likely run many of the plays for this offense as well as playing off-ball when Beal takes control. Dinwiddie should be able to adapt to whatever is needed of him and if he can return to his form 2 seasons ago, the Wizards may have one of the better backcourts in the Eastern Conference.

    Breakout Player

    Rui Hachimura is our breakout player for this season. Rui showed good signs in his first few seasons where many compared him to a younger Kawhi Leonard due to his style of play. Rui has steadily improved in each of his 2 seasons, improving his points per game, field goal percentage and three point percentage last season, despite the addition of Russell Westbrook who took away touches from everyone. Rui now enters year 3 as the number 3 scoring option and may become the number 2 option behind Beal if Dinwiddie can’t return to form from his torn ACL. 

    Hachimura showed signs of his ability to be a go-to option for the Wizards, averaging 14.8 points per game and 7.2 rebounds per game in the playoffs, which are all better than his regular season stats. Rui also shot 61.7% from the field and 60% from 3. If Rui can continue this level of play, he will get plenty of opportunities with Westbrook gone. We think he breaks out and averages over 20 points per game, around 8 rebounds while shooting nearly 40% from 3 this season.

    Washington Wizards Betting & Odds Preview 2021-22

    The Wizards have opened with +10000 odds for the 2020-21 NBA Championship. These improved when the team traded for Russell Westbrook before the season but their terrible play early on saw their odds balloon once again. They then went on an exceptional run which saw them rise from near the bottom of the conference to qualifying for the playoffs, but their odds never improved.

    This was justified as they were eliminated in just five games, sending them to the offseason earlier than they would have liked and spoiling their bettors luck. Despite having two top-20 players on their roster, there is too much uncertainty, resulting in +15000 odds for the 2022 NBA Championship.

    Given their poor start to the year, expectations were lowered for the Wizrds and this resulted in them having the third best record against the spread in the league, 41-30-1. They were 19-17 at home and an impressive 22-13-1 on the road.

    Given their offensive nature, with little care for defense, the Wizards had elevated total points lines set for them. This resulted in a 36-36 O/U record for the season.

    Washington Wizards FAQs

    Still, got some burning questions about the Washington Wizards? Well, we have answered some of the most common questions people have, hopefully, you will find the answer you are looking for below! 

    Where do the Washington Wizards play?

    The Washington Wizards play their home games at the Capital One Arena. 

    Who owns the Washington Wizards?

    Ted Leonsis is the owner of the Washington Wizards. 

    Have the Washington Wizards won an NBA Championship?

    The Washington Wizards have won one NBA Championship, in 1978. 

    Who is the Washington Wizards coach?

    Wes Unseld Jr. is the head coach of the Washington Wizards. Unseld Jr. was hired in the 2021 offseason after being an assistant in Denver for the last six seasons. 

    Do the Washington Wizards play tonight?

    Are you wondering if the Washington Wizards are playing tonight? Well, SportsTips has all the details you need about upcoming Washington Wizards games! Make sure you check this page at the top for all the details you are looking for.

    What is the Washington Wizards record?

    The Washington Wizards had a 34-38 win-loss record for the 2020-21 NBA season. 

    Did the Washington Wizards win last night?

    Fans of the Washington Wizards are all wanting to know if they won the game last night. You can find more information in relation to the team’s recent form in games on the page at the top.

    How much are the Washington Wizards worth?

    According to Forbes Magazine, the Washington Wizards are worth $1.75 billion. 

    Who do the Washington Wizards play tonight?

    Like a lot of things in the NBA, things change pretty quickly. So, if you are looking for more information about who the Washington Wizards play tonight, you have come to the right place. We have all this information for you in detail, you can find these details for upcoming games at the top of the page.

    How to watch the Washington Wizards?

    You can watch the Washington Wizards on TV channels like ESPN, ABC, TNT, NBA TV or NBC Sports Washington or subscribe to NBA League Pass. 

    Will the Washington Wizards make the playoffs this year?

    The Washington Wizards made the playoffs in the 2020-21 season after finishing eighth in the Eastern Conference standings with a 34-38 record. They lost the 7 v 8 Play-In Game to Boston but beat the Pacers in the eighth-seed elimination Play-In Game to qualify for the playoffs. 

    Will the Washington Wizards get the 1st pick in the NBA Draft?

    The Washington Wizards received the 15th pick in the 2021 NBA draft. 

    When do the Washington Wizards play?

    Washington Wizards fans are always looking for more information about when their team plays the next game. For all the information you have been craving and more, be sure to check the top of this page. Here at SportsTips, we list all the information you need like the tip off time, location of the game and the all-important NBA odds.

    Where did the Washington Wizards finish the season?

    The Washington Wizards finished the 2020-21 NBA season in eighth place in the Eastern Conference. 

    How many games did the Washington Wizards win?

    The Washington Wizards won 34 games during the 2020-21 NBA season.