He has more rings than Jerry West and Oscar Robertson.
And he's dating Maria Sharapova. Nope...life isn't fair.

This may be hard for you to believe right now, but during the summer of 2008, there was some serious drama about whether or not the Lakers would be able to re-sign Sasha Vujacic, a.k.a. The Machine. So much so, in fact, that he was threatening to take his talents to South Beach Europe. No, really.

From the Los Angeles Times:

Lakers reserve guard Sasha Vujacic, a restricted free agent, is prepared to leave the team and accept an offer from a European team in the next few days if the Lakers don't make him an offer he deems fair, according to a source in the Vujacic camp who spoke only on the condition of anonymity.

The source said Vujacic is seeking a multiyear deal from the Lakers averaging about $5 million a year. Vujacic was hoping for a six-year deal, but anticipated it could be a shorter contract.


Because the Lakers are over the luxury tax, they would be assessed an amount equal to any sum they spend over it.

Lakers General Manager Mitch Kupchak has been negotiating with Vujacic's agent, Rob Pelinka.

"We are very aware of the global market as it has changed over the years. It was our desire to bring Sasha and Ronny back. It continues to be our desire to bring Sasha back," Kupchak said Thursday after hearing of Vujacic's ultimatum. "However, with the ever-changing marketplace that Europe has become, a player, in order to cover his bases, can negotiate with his NBA team and, at the same time, have a plan that allows him to have the possibility of going overseas."
I loved it. Loved it, I tell you. Especially the "according to a source in the Vujacic camp who spoke only on the condition of anonymity" part. It may as well have said, "according to Sasha Vujacic, who is posing as a member of his make-believe camp and therefore needs to speak only on the condition of anonymity."

Mind you, these crazy demands were issued shortly after Vujacic got used by Ray Allen like a Clorox Wipe on a stripper pole...during a critical possession of the NBA Finals no less:

Anyway, the possibility of losing Vujacic to some foreign team actually got some people worked up. People like Kelly Dwyer of Ball Don't Lie. Okay, not really. Dwyer was kidding. Most likely. But I distinctly remember reading some Lakers fan posts urging Kupchak to build a wall of money around the United States over which Vujacic would never be able to escape.

On July 25, 2010, that's exactly what Kupchack did:

Lakers restricted free agent guard Sasha Vujacic has agreed to a three-year, $15 million contract after emerging last season as a key member of the Western Conference champions.

"We felt Sasha made great progress in this past year, and our coach showed great confidence in playing him the second half of the season," Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak said Friday in confirming the agreement, first reported by the Riverside Press-Enterprise. "Assuming he continues to work as hard during the offseason as he has in the past, I don't see any reason that trend wouldn't continue."

The 24-year-old Vujacic averaged a career-high 8.8 points, 2.1 rebounds and 1.0 assists in 72 games this season, and 8.1 points 2.2 rebounds and 0.8 assists while playing in all 21 playoff games.

Vujacic drew national attention June 10, scoring a career playoff high 20 points including a crucial 3-pointer with a little under two minutes remaining in the Lakers' 87-81 victory over the Celtics in Game 3 of the NBA finals.
Hey, sure, why not? Vujacic had been pesky on defense and a pretty reliable shooter on offense (45% from the field and 43 percent on threes). He had that good Finals game. And the fans loved Sasha. Even Kobe Bryant loved Sasha. Just ask...Sasha:

"They are my team. They brought me over from Europe and I feel at home in this organization and in LA. Everywhere I'd go, Lakers fans would say to me, 'Please re-sign, you have to come back Machine.' And that really gave me a warm feeling about it."


"It's always kind of been older brother, younger brother with Kobe and I. Kobe called me on the first day of free agency and said, 'I love you and we all need you. But whatever you decide, I'll stand by your decision.' Then he called me on the last day I was deciding and at the end of the conversation, we both said, 'Let's do it.'"
Wow. With all that love, and the newfound riches, there was nothing holding Vujacic back from having the best season of his career. Nothing except the fact that he wasn't really all that good to begin with.

During the 2008-09 season, Sasha regressed. His scoring average dropped 3 PPG and his shooting went to hell (38% from the field, 36 from downtown). His decline into a pasty mass of useless man-flesh highlighted the only potential vulnerability in L.A.'s championship hopes: Lack of depth at the guard position.

In all fairness to Vujacic -- I can't believe I'm even typing those words -- he did start the season with a fractured ankle (as an anonymous reader reminded me). That would qualify as a setback. Said Vujacic: "I realize that it is what it is. You've got to play it smart. And, it's going to be OK. Right now, it's just a little bit frustrating."

Even more so for Lakers fans, Sasha.

If Vujacic's regular season was a failure -- and let's face it, he managed to disappoint on a team with the perpetually disappointing Luke Walton and Adam Morrison -- his playoffs were the rotten cherry on the poop sundae of his career. Vujacic logged 250 minutes over 23 postseason games and was, without a doubt, the most cadaverous of the active Lakers (Morrison wasn't on the playoff roster). He averaged only 3 PPG on 26 percent shooting. His PER was 4.2. He compiled an Offensive Rating of 82 and a Defensive Rating of 104. He finished the playoffs with a Win Share of -0.1, tied with D.J. Mbenga for worst on the team. And at least Mbenga had an excuse: He only played 16 postseason minutes. All I know is finishing with a negative Win Share score on a championship team is a pretty bad sign. Much like waking up with a pit bull's mouth clamped to your genitals is a bad sign.

What's more, Vujacic's performance in the championship series nearly earned him "Legally Deceased" status. In five Finals games, Sasha scored exactly zero points on 0-for-6 shooting. His series totals were: 2 rebounds, 1 assist, 1 turnover and 3 fouls. It's like the Magic paid him off to suck. (Huh. That sounded bad.) The only thing he didn't do was whack Kobe Bryant in the knee with a baseball bat.

Money well-spent, Mitch.

Beyond his general uselessness in his team's championship cause, Vujacic just bugs the shit out of me. He's one of the biggest, creepiest, most annoying douchebags in the NBA. If not the biggest. As Stormin' Normam Disciple of Not Qualified To Comment said: "This whiny, flopping, jabbering idiot pisses everyone off." That's right: Everyone. Even teammates. I mean, the dude tried to start some junk at practice with Adam Morrison of all people (said Kobe: "A lot of meowing going on out there. The claws coming out.")

Seriously, his teammates can't stand him:

I mean, really:

And again:

Aaaaand again:

And don't think it's only his teammates. Remember when Carmelo Anthony tried to choke a bitch? Check it:

And let's not forget this ill-timed nonsense from the 2010 Western Conference Finals...

...which almost earned him a death sentence from Kobe:

I don't think he was joking. Considering what Kobe's legal team has done for him in the past, I'm surprised Sasha didn't enter witness protection.

So yeah. I have a little extra emnity for this basketball waste product. It's bad enough the guy is being paid millions to mop the Lakers bench with his Eurotrash ass. He's also a miserable excuse for a human being. God, I hate that guy.

But he has a ring. In fact, he's got two.


Update! Sincere apologies for not linking to the Vujachicks site, something so utterly bawful it is retroactively erasing cool things from our reality even as you read these words. As of this writing, several classic Atari 2600 games no longer exist...but that damn E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial game still does. Thanks, Vujachicks.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anonymous Anonymous said...
Why can't he play D every game like he did in the 2008 finals? At least then I didn't hate the guy because he put in some effort.

But I hate him now. Can't believe that all these douche white european basketball players get to date all the supermodel/sports babes.

Anonymous Barry said...
I'm a Kobe hater but you've got to love the man for that last video.

"I'm gonna kill him"

With a completely straight face. Then he realized that probably wouldn't go over well so he smirks.

Anonymous Stockton said...
"But he has a ring."

He has two :)

Anonymous Anonymous said...
Ok. Right. Everyone shun Stockton now.

Blogger David Murphy said...
Yes, but he's addressing the problem with typical alarcrity:


Anonymous Anonymous said...
Jesus Christ i hate THE BITCH with all my soul, almost as much as paul pierce.

Anonymous kazam92 said...
How could you omit Phil Jackson's decision to have him shoot the 2 gme clinching FTs in game 7 after he didn't play all game?

How epic it would have been had he missed

Blogger Unknown said...
I love the look on Ariza's face when Sasha ignores his wide open look to a brick a three. The dude just couldnt fathom that the rock didn't come back to him so much so that it takes him a couple of seconds to recover. That is hilarious.

Blogger Unknown said...
I hate Sasha, and I can't wait for Steve Blake to take all his minutes, but...exhibit A as to why that $15 million was worth it:


Even with that video, I'm glad he comes off the books after this season.

Blogger Ash said...
As a Laker fan, I love Sasha, precisely because he pisses people like you off.

Anonymous Heretic said...
I was really hoping the Lakers would trade him this year for a true 3 point specialist (i'm looking at you Kapono). Its pretty much the only weakness the Lakers have. On the bright side since they acquired Barnes, Sasha will be seeing even less playing time.

Of course the cherry on the sundae of hate I have for Sasha is because of this site:


Word Verification: Mistbrit. Probably the name of the hair gel Sasha uses.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
For the record, the main reason Sasha's productivity went off a cliff was an injury suffered in camp during the 08-09 season. As you noted, the year before that he was part of the Lakers crunch time lineup (Fisher, Sasha, Kobe, Odom, Gasol) and won a Finals game by himself. So signing the contract wasn't TOO bad. The problem was that injury and the lingering effects.

For those people who don't follow the Lakers, you don't know that this team has (by far) the worst training staff in the league. Every time someone on the Lakers gets a seemingly minor injury, it has a very high probability to stick with them for life and/or potentially ruin their career. To note.

Let's start with Walton. Walton was the 3rd best player on a playoff team and a starter. He was leading the league in 3 point percentage for awhile until...he turned an ankle. Now his last name is WALTON so we shouldn't be surprised when an ankle injury never goes away but still. He returned from a turned ankle (after missing 1/3 the season). Since that point he's been unable to jump over an ant, his 3 point % has been bad since then and he probably leads the league in % of his own shots sent directly back into his nose.

Chris Mihm. In 07-08 he sprained his ankle midway through the year. For some reason he missed THE ENTIRE REST OF THE SEASON with a sprained ankle. He then missed most of next season. When he finally came back, he could no longer jump. His career was basically ended. He was traded to Memphis in a salary dump, they got one look at his foot and he never played pro basketball again.

Then we get to Vujacic. Sprained his ankle early in the preseason of 08-09 (notice a trend here). There's evidence that he STILL has not recovered. He hasn't had the athleticism on the perimeter even though he thinks he does. In 08, he was playing decent physical defense. Now he can't stay in front of anyone, so he leads the league in fouls committed 40 feet+ from the basket. His shot has also never recovered due to the lack of arc, which can be attributed to diminished leg strength.

Then there's Kobe and the fact that for the rest of his life, he has lost some degree of mobility on 2 fingers on his right hand. And people wonder why Gasol (the smartest guy on the team) completely stopped listening to the Lakers training staff and brought in his own doctors regarding his hamstrings last year. Smartest decision he ever made.

Two morals here. One, if you hurt your ankle on the Lakers, immediately demand to be traded to the Suns before Gary Vitti even looks at you. And two, Sasha wasn't destined to suck, he just got the worst possible injury on the worst possible team. Until the day I die, I will always maintain that if he never hurt his ankle, he would have been a good 6th man in the league.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
Im a Laker fan and cant stand this guy. Only one more year... I hope

Anonymous AK Dave said...
Sharapova < Kournikova

Blogger GonzoPal said...
It´s already been here last season, but this sicko has some inspiring moments. Just...not...by basketball standarts ;) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XwTDPvXszhw

Blogger Dooj said...
Why do the announcers always seem to defend him?

Blogger Unknown said...
What?!?!? No mention of the Vujachicks and their 260-member website? That's its own form of bawful.


Blogger Unknown said...
@GonzoPal - This video might be from the same guy: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZHeXmAHr1Sw

"Jump in sky, do a slamma-jamma bing-bong."

I can't tell if he's mocking or giving a tribute to Sasha. Either way, it's so stupid, it's funny.

Blogger Wild Yams said...
In the interest of trying to incorporate a dig at the Kings in each entry (dunno if that's still happening with these), here's a video which includes Vujacic delivering a facial dunk in traffic over two Sacramento players.

I've actually had this belief for a while that Vujacic is the most hated player in the league. For one thing, he plays for the Lakers, so he's pretty much guaranteed to be hated right off the bat by fans of every other team. Second, he's hands down the most annoying player on the Lakers, who seems to take pride in just pissing players of other teams off, so that makes him the player many fans would most want to punch in the face. And finally, he's not very good, but he gets paid a lot, and when he's in the game he insists on committing stupid fouls and shooting bricks virtually every time he touches the ball, so even Laker fans hate his guts. Is there anyone in the league more hated than The Machine? I doubt it.

Blogger Andrei said...
Hey, turns out that all of those who thought "The Decision" was a bullshit move by King Crab are just racist who are afraid of black people: http://espn.go.com/blog/truehoop/post/_/id/19964/black-people-arent-livid-at-lebron-james

Blogger AnacondaHL said...

Kupchak only kept Sasha on the team because he knows Dragic is the future of the Suns and $15 million is pretty cheap money for an assured playoffs series win every year.

In other words, fuck this shit.

Anonymous Bryan said...
I love how in the Mbenga video Sasha even manages to piss off Lamar and gets yelled at by him. It takes a real douche bag to piss off multiple teamates on one play. Congrats!!

Blogger chris said...
Wild Yams: Do my Purple Paupers need video help to look like, well, peasants? :P :D

CAPTCHA: "flatosup"

Blogger Unknown said...
It looks like we're coming to an end of this fine series of posts. Unless bawful does a whole series on the worst WNBA champions, but that's just dumb. Maybe a retro, pre-2000 worst champions is in the cards?

Tomorrow's entry: Morrison? Walton? DJ? Powell? I bet Bawful goes a different route and makes this entry about a starter. (Hint: his name rhymes with Don Fartest.)

Anonymous Stockton said...
Can't take off my mind the thought of Machine riding Sharapova while giving FU's to the world with his 2 rings in the middle fingers...
World is not fair...

Anonymous SirGirthNasty said...
I completely agree with you 'Bawful. And although a single trip to the charity stripe does not qualify him to make 5 million a season, who knows what would have happened if he hadn't hit those clutch free throws during game 7?

An unintentional omission on your part? Me thinks not.

Blogger AnacondaHL said...
Tomorrow is just Sasha Vujacic again with more pics of him with Sharapova for your imagination (see Stockton's post above) and even more YouTubes.

Although Morrison the ring chaser may make the cut, with his attempts to sign in Boston.

Blogger chris said...
Sorbo: I DEMAND that. I want worst champions from 1947 to 1999!!!

Blogger Paul said...
Anonymous said:
For those people who don't follow the Lakers, you don't know that this team has (by far) the worst training staff in the league. Every time someone on the Lakers gets a seemingly minor injury, it has a very high probability to stick with them for life and/or potentially ruin their career. To note.

Nailed it right in the head, you also forgot to include Andrew Bynum to that list of injured players that have gotten screwed by the Lakers training staff.
Back in 08 Bynum was supposed to miss only 4 weeks but ended up missing out the entire season.

Same in 09, they rushed him back into the playoffs where he turned out to be completely ineffective.

Blogger David Robinson said...
was this the easiest worst champions post ever written? Dear god what a sorry excuse for a person.


Anonymous Adrià said...
SirGirthNasty: If Sasha didn't hit those freebies and maybe Ray Ray made a three-pointer afterwards...

Sasha would still have one ring.

Blogger David Murphy said...
Sasha's actually his own worst enemy. He's been given a lot of chances but he over-thinks, over-worries, over-talks, over-shoots, etc.. If he would have just STFU and played system ball he would have been fine.

Blogger Bing said...
The Machine, thank God he will only be around for one more season. Would any team be crazy enough to pick up this bum once LA lets him walk?
Prime example of playing well in a contract year and then stinking up then joint for ever and ever

Blogger Basketbawful said...
It looks like we're coming to an end of this fine series of posts. Unless bawful does a whole series on the worst WNBA champions, but that's just dumb.

All that would take is cutting and pasting the roster of WNBA Championship Team X and hitting "publish."

Maybe a retro, pre-2000 worst champions is in the cards?

I am very seriously considering it...

Anonymous Barry said...
Just do the Lakers again, and make the whole post about Sharapova.


Blogger Michael Hsu said...
Holy cow bawful, I figured you'd want your women readership to increase!


Blogger Unknown said...
If there's the remotest of possibility for a Carmelo trade, Lakers probably play Sasha early in this season to boast his stats before trying to dump him on Denver.

Likelihood he plays stat-boasting minutes to spur a trade: 1 in 10.

Likelihood of a trade: 1 in 1,000,000.

Blogger Unknown said...
Let me congratulate Bulls fans for gaining a key piece to your team. He brings championship experience and can wave a towel like no other: Brian Scalabrine!

He should fit the hole left by Noah being shipped to Denver.

Anonymous ggginobili said...
The Bynum video was classic. I mean the only logical thing there was to lob the ball to your big who has good position. But no, he opted to swing it the other way just do be a douche. Notice the weak side guys weren't really expecting the ball to go back. Classic!

Blogger zyth said...
kick the baby!
as in : Thibodeau reaaally pulled a good one on Chicago. I seriously wonder what will happen with Scal now

Anonymous Anonymous said...
I'm not entirely sure Bynum was just yelling at Vuljacic there. He definately played a part in that Bawful but he didn't dominate the possession, the whole team failed there.

On a side note, the worst player in Celtic history has now been traded to my bulls. >.< Thoughts on this?

Blogger Michael Hsu said...
hey guys we missed out on Lefail James and got CJ watson and Brian Scalabrine.

That sounds like a fair deal to me.

WTF when did Keith Bogans end up on the Bulls!

Anonymous Anonymous said...
so sasha is a 6 foot something white guy who puts in a lot of effort and plays pesky, in-your-face defense. too bad he worked so hard on his jumpshot. if only he followed your strategy of driving in REALLY hard, he could have been good enough to rip on NBA players on the internet instead of making millions of dollars and banging supermodels!

Blogger Dan B. said...
FYI guys, read this excellent article about the prospects of a lockout after this season. Hopefully it doesn't come to that, but at least this article explains the situation and some of the options.

Blogger AnacondaHL said...
DanB - I was about to scoff at an ESPN article link regarding a potential lockout, as most of you should be doing automatically since the stories next sommer may be even more insufferable than this summer's free agency crappy crap, but then I saw the author and Larry Coon is the man and the article is quite good. All eyes are on Coon for next year's CBA interpretation. His twitter is also funny.

Speaking of twitter, have you all been following @KingJames? Literally every tweet or profile picture change he's done has made me hate him more. It's fascinating.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
In defense of Vujacic, he did make the two title-clinching free throws in Game 7 of the Finals this year

Anonymous jodial said...
I can't argue with any of your comments on the Machine...but as a Laker fan, those free throws at the end of game 7 were worth $7.5 million apiece.