WASHINGTON — The Washington Wizards will retire Phil Chenier’s jersey — No. 45 — and had Bradley Beal break the news to him.
Chenier, 66, is being phased out of his longtime role on Wizards broadcasts, where he’s served as a game analyst since 1984, shortly after retiring from a 10-year playing career in the NBA.
Capital One Arena currently has four retired jerseys hanging from its rafters, all of whom Chenier played alongside for the Bullets: Earl Monroe (No. 10), Elvin Hayes (No. 11), Gus Johnson (No. 25), Wes Unseld (No. 41)
“What would it mean to you to have your number retired,” Beal asks in a sit-down interview with Chenier.
“It would mean a great deal. It would mean a lot,” Chenier said. “I played with the other four people that are up there. I played with all of them and it would be an honor to be there.”
“I want to be the first one to congratulate you,” Beal said. “Because this year our organization is hanging that 45 up in the rafters.”
“Are you serious?” Chenier said, and the paused for a moment. “I don’t want to do anything silly right now.”
“We’ve got to cut this now,” he said. “You’re not lying to me now?”
Chenier again insisted the camera stop rolling.