Champion Bullets Celebrate 25 Years
1978 Champion Bullets: (from left to right) Irene and Abe Pollin, Wes Unseld, Thomas Henderson, Joe Pace, Charles Johnson, Larry Wright, Phil Walker, Kevin Grevey, John Lally, Bob Dandridge, Mitch Kupchak, Dick Motta, Bob Ferry
Mitchell Layton/NBAE/Getty Images
Nearly 25 years to the day that the 1977-78 Washington Bullets began their run to the NBA World Championship, the members of the title team gathered to celebrate the silver anniversary of bringing a championship to the nation's capital.
Members of the team, including Finals MVP Wes Unseld, Bob Dandridge, Mitch Kupchak and head coach of the championship team Dick Motta, reunited at a dinner that was attended by invited members of the media.
"It's been interesting to draw some kind of perspective on 25 years because it's gone quick," said Unseld who averaged 9.4 points and 12 rebounds per game in the playoffs. "It just seems like it was just a short period ago that we were out there trying to get this thing done."
"Flying in today all the memories [of the championship run] went through my mind and it was one of the things that brought a smile to my face," said Kupchak, who currently serves as the general manager of the Los Angeles Lakers.
In a ceremony hosted by Frank Herzog, the Bullets radio play-by-play announcer during the championship season and current WUSA-TV sports anchor, all players and coached were introduced with their accomplishments during the championship season.
Chairmen of the Washington Wizards Irene and Abe Pollin , Bob Ferry, who served as general manager, and Motta also spoke about the team's accomplishments as well as what it was like to be surrounded by players who had a goal to win.
"For one night you gave me the feeling that I was number one in the world," said Pollin.
As the team enjoyed dinner together, the game between the Washington Wizards and the Cleveland Cavaliers was shown around the restaurant. While many of the players said that they do follow the current team, they feel that a little bit of history might be unearthed should the current team make the playoffs.
The motto during the '78 playoffs was, "the opera ain't over until the fat lady sings." Some of the players feel that should the Wizards make the playoffs this season, the fat lady may have one more song left in her.
"The fat lady is still around and I'm quite sure someone is going to pull out that uniform should the Wizards make the playoffs," Dandridge said.
The 25th anniversary celebration will culminate with tonight's retro night game between the Wizards and the Boston Celtics. The Wizards will wear the uniforms of the 1978 season, and the championship team will be honored during a ceremony at halftime.