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Washington Wizards Tickets
Washington Wizards Tickets
The Washington Wizards hold the distinction of being the first NBA expansion team after its initial formation in 1949. When the Wizards joined the league in 1961, they were located in Chicago and known as the Chicago Packers. A series of moves and name changes followed until the team finally settled in Washington D.C. and became the Washington Bullets in 1974. The Bullets won their first NBA title in 1978 behind the leadership of Elvin Hayes and Wes Unseld and returned to the finals a year later. Washington reached the finals two other times in the 1970s. A period of decline followed, and the Bullets became the Wizards in 1997. Michael Jordan came out of retirement to play for Washington from 2001 to 2003. He had been a part owner of the team prior to that point. The Wizards enjoyed a resurgence after Jordan retired for good, making the playoffs every year from 2004 to 2008.
Verizon Center, Home to the Washington Wizards
The 18,506-seat Verizon Center has played host to Washington Wizards games since 1997. The team played a number of playoff contests here from 2005-08, including the third and fourth games of an Eastern Conference Semifinal series with the Miami Heat in 2005. The 2001 All-Star Game was also held here. Additionally, the facility plays host to the NHL's Washington Capitals, the WNBA's Washington Mystic,s and Georgetown University's men's basketball team. George Mason University advanced to the 2006 Final Four in a memorable college basketball game played here. The arena is located above Gallery Place, a station on the Washington Metro.
Washington Wizards and the Eastern Conference
Previously known as the Washington Bullets, the Wizards compete against the Miami Heat, Orlando Magic, Atlanta Hawks, and Charlotte Bobcats in the Southeast Division of the Eastern Conference. Since 1969, the Wizards have captured seven division titles and four conference championships for the Washington franchise. Although Washington advanced to the NBA Finals four times, the team's only victory came in 1978 versus the Seattle Supersonics. The team's biggest rivalry is with the Cleveland Cavaliers, having met 36 times since 2005, including three consecutive meetings in the playoffs.
Washington Wizards 2012 Team Outlook
The Washington Wizards are looking to make it back to the NBA playoffs for the first time since the 2007-08 campaign after finishing 23-59 last year. JaVale McGee, Andray Blatche, Jordan Crawford, and John Wall are all starters who will be returning, but Maurice Evans is exploring his free-agent options. If he departs, small forward Rashard Lewis is expected to move up and take his spot. Lewis battled injuries in 2010-11 and only played 32 games that season. Off-season draft picks Jan Veselý and Chris Singleton also play that position and are expected to compete for playing time there.