Former Los Angeles Lakers legend, Sasha Vujacic better-known by the fans as ‘The Machine’ shed light on how the 2008 finals loss to the Boston Celtics stung the side.
Vujacic was selected by the Lakers in the first round of the NBA 2004 Draft with the 27th overall pick and was one of their impact players in clutch situations over the course of his time with the decorated franchise.
In an exclusive with Clutch Points, the Slovenian got candid about his time with the Purple and Gold and his relationship with the late Kobe Bryant. However, one of the intriguing parts of the story was how the team felt in the aftermath of the 4-2 loss against the Celtics.
"In 2008 when we lost, for a year, myself, a lot of my teammates, and people in LA actually didn’t wear green for a year. You know how consistent and serious we were about."
The Lakers had their revenge in 2010 when they ousted the Celtics 4-3. Vujacic was a savior for the side in Game 7 when he made full use of the free throws that were awarded after a quick foul by the Celtics with 11.7 seconds on the clock.
His successful brace put the Lakers on top after they led 81-79, making it tough for Boston to stage a comeback. They missed the next possession, and the Lakers went on to win their second championship in a row.
"Thank God I didn’t miss those free throws. A lot of times, people forget that I was there for seven years and the only thing they remember are the free throws and thank god because that was payback and to answer your question, that’s probably one of the most amazing feelings that Lakers fans got and I got as well and our team. By winning and getting our rematch done properly in 2010."
Vujacic, a two-time Turkish Basketball League All-Star, was an integral part of the Los Angeles outfit. He set a record for the best three-point FG percentage (.437) in a single season and was involved in their back-to-back championship runs in 2009 and 2010.
Over the course of his career, he averaged 5.3 PPG, 1.3 RPG, and 1.3 APG. After his career with the Lakers, he went on to play for the New Jersey Nets, Los Angeles Clippers, and the New York Knicks.