The NBA Washington Wizards play in the Eastern Conference’s Southeast Division as part of the National Basketball Association. The Wizards are based out of Washington, D.C. and play at Verizon Center. In 1962, the team was formed and called the Chicago Zephyrs but moved in 1963 to Baltimore Maryland where they were named the Baltimore Bullets.
In 1967, the Bullets drafted Earl Monroe and in 1968 Wes Unseld. In 1968-69, the Bullets won 57 games, but lost the first round of the playoffs to the New York Knicks. In 1969-70, the Knicks once again defeated the Bullets in the first round of the playoffs. In 1970-71, the Bullets defeated the Knicks this time at the Eastern Conference Finals. They were defeated in the NBA Finals by the Milwaukee Bucks, who were led by Oscar Robertson and Lew Alcindor (Kareem Abdul Jabbar).
The team became known as the Capital Bullets in 1973 after moving to Landover, Maryland and then the following season were renamed the Washington Bullets. In 1974-75, the Bullets went 60-22 but were upset in the NBA Finals by the Golden State Warriors led by Rick Barry. In 1977-78, led by Wes Unseld and Elvin Hayes, the Bullets defeated the Seattle SuperSonics to win the NBA Championship. In 1978-79, the Bullets returned to the finals against the Seattle SuperSonics once again, but this time Seattle prevailed.
In 1984-85, the Bullets went 42-40. It was the last winning season for Washington until 1996-97. In 1996-97, led by Chris Webber and Juwan Howard, the Bullets went 44-38 and finally made it back to the playoffs. In the first round, they were swept by the Chicago Bulls
In 1997, the name of the team was changed to the Washington Wizards. In 1999, Michael Jordan retired from basketball. In January 2000, he became President of Basketball Operations for the Washington Wizards and a minority owner. Jordan, at the age of 38 in September 2001, came back from retirement and played for the Wizards. Jordan returned to play the 2002-03 season. However, following the season Michael Jordan was fired by Abe Pollin, the majority owner, as team president.