Veteran guard Dave Bing, reacting to Elvin Hays' request to be traded, said yesterday the Bullets are an unhappy team and put much of the blame on coach Dick Motta.
"Elvin may be a lot of things, but whatever he is, they've known about it I've since he's been here," Bing said.
"I don't think he can be criticized for his play, but it looks like he's going to get run out of town. Elvin just isn't the type of player who can make a team great by himself.
"We just didn't have the same happy team we had last year," Bing continued. "The players have to bear some of the burden, but the coach has to take some of the blame, too.
"Everyone is getting on the players, but we're no worse than we were last year when K.C. (Jones) got all the blame.
"Dick made just as many mistakes as K.C. did, but he's not getting any heat for it."
Bing, a starter in his first season with the Bullets (1975-76), was benched by Motta midway through this last season.
When he came to the Bullets in exchange for Devin Porter in 1975, he signed a two-year contract with an option year. That contract has expired, and it is up to the Bullets whether or not to exercise their option with Bing.
Indications are that they will not.
Another Bullet whose contract has expired is center Wes Unseld, who had his worst statistical season ever. While there has been speculation that Unseld was going to retire, he said yesterday he wants to continue playing.
"I'm just waiting to hear from them (the Bullets)," Unseld said. "I haven't really thought about what I should do. I don't even know if they want me to play here or not.
"Physically, I can play, and, yes, I want to stay here, but the thought of playing somewhere else doesn't bother me. I don't have any gripes if I stay here or not. I'm just waiting to hear from the Bullets. I have plenty of time."
Bullets general manager Bob Ferry said he plans to talk with Unseld in the next few days.
"He (Unseld) has been and is still a very important part of this club," Ferry said.
The same cannot, or at least will not, be said in the case of Bing.
"The relationship between Dick and myself would have to improve for me to be happy here," Bing said, "and I'd have o be assured that I'd play more than three minutes a game. I just have to wait and see what happens.
"Right now it looks like they are going to tear the whole team apart and I don't think that's the solution," Bing added.
"It'll take time to rebuild and that gives them (the Bullets) a built-in excuse if it fails. If they wanted to rebuild, they could have done it with K.C.
"It's just not a healthy situation here now," Bing added. "I don't like the way he (Motta) handled me, but it's nothing personal. A lot of other players didn't agree with some of the things he did. He just didn't relate to the players. If you have super players like Philadelphia, it's not that important to relate well. But we don't have those types of players, and we didn't relate well with him."
The Bullets' offense, according to Bing, "has come back to haunt us. If Phil (Chenier) and E score well and we win, then great, but when we lose, people say they choked and all of that. If there is ever going to be a super team here, you have to take some of the pressure off those two."
What upsets Bing perhaps more than anything else is the fact that he feels Motta has escaped being blamed for any of the team's shortcomings.
"From the midseason point of lasst year on, every move K.C. made was really played up, substitutes, time-outs and everything. It was blown way out of proportion.
"The same things happened this year, but Dick wasn't criticized or scrutinized for them like K.C. was. That's not right."
Ferry said he was pleased with Motta. "I want to win as badly as anyone, but I'm still proud of what we did this year. As far as I'm concerned, we had a great year."