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Evan Vucci, Associated Press
Washington Wizards owner Ted Leonsis holds a news conference during NBA basketball media day, Thursday, Dec. 15, 2011 in Washington.

WASHINGTON — Owner Ted Leonsis believes his Washington Wizards can become a "destination" — the sort of NBA team that top players strive to join, no matter what it takes.

That will take some time, Leonsis acknowledges. He makes it perfectly clear that the Wizards are still early on in the process of reconstructing around No. 1 overall draft pick John Wall.

During a half-hour news conference Thursday at Washington's media day, Leonsis used the word "build" or some version of it more than a dozen times, as in: "I hope I've been honest and transparent ... (about) rebuilding the team."

Coming off a 23-59 season, Washington plays the first of its two exhibition games on Friday night, hosting the Philadelphia 76ers. The regular season starts Dec. 26.