Most of the lame-stream basketball media guffawed when Phil Jackson signed former Lakers guard Sasha Vujacic to a guaranteed deal. After all, he hasn't played more than 10 minutes of NBA basketball since the first Obama administration. How could he possibly contribute?
Oh, how wrong they were. Not only did Vujacic contribute in his first Media Day as a member of the Knicks, he won this site's official endorsement for Media Day MVP. Truly it was a performance for the ages.
Let's start with that magnificent hair:
So much hair. So jealous. pic.twitter.com/WauSu7I8yv— Scott Cacciola (@ScottCacciola) September 28, 2015
Many players would content simply to show off their flowing locks for the photographers, but Vujacic took it to the next level by photo-bombing new teammate Derrick Williams:
.@SashaVujacic on his photobombing game for #NYKMediaDay. @DWXXIII his first victim. pic.twitter.com/58Nn4jxo0W— NEW YORK KNICKS (@nyknicks) September 28, 2015
With such a winning smile, it should come as no surprise that Vujacic has quite the reputation with the ladies. A gentleman never tells, however, and Vujacic deftly shot down Marc Berman's questions about his ex-girlfriend, tennis star Maria Sharapova:
Berman asks Sasha V if he is still close with Maria Sharapova... The Knicks season is now officially underway— Tommy Beer (@TommyBeer) September 28, 2015
Sasha ignores the question the 1st time. Berman asks again. Sasha smiles, pretends he can't hear. Eventually says he'll only talk basketball— Tommy Beer (@TommyBeer) September 28, 2015
Not content merely to woo the crowd in English or his native slovenščina, Vujacic busted out some Mandarin Chinese:
"Nín hǎo!" -Vujacic to Chinese reporter— Scott Cacciola (@ScottCacciola) September 28, 2015
So damn smooth. Vujacic used the formal term for "you" -- 您 (nín) -- instead of the common 你 (nǐ). What better way to win over the Chinese media than by addressing them in the most respectful manner possible.
In conclusion, Sasha Vujacic has the hair of a Greek god and speaks dozens of languages. Women want him, men want to be him. Will any of that translate to the basketball court? I don't see why not. Hopefully he can provide all of J.R. Smith's outside shooting and greasy charm without all the suspensions and shoelace untying.