Inside the Lakers: It’s one of the oddest, least expected pairings you could think of, but Kobe Bryant is actually pretty tight with young shooting guard Sasha Vujacic. In years past, he’s invited him to train with him during the summers, and seems to respect Vujacic’s passion for the game. Now that Vujacic is a restricted free agent, here’s the advice Bryant said he’d give his young disciple.

“With Shi-shi (Sasha). He should do what’s obviously best for himself and his family. Obviously as a big brother, that’s the best advice I could give him,” Bryant said. “I would love to keep him around for selfish reasons, because of his defense, his passion, and his shooting was obviously something that was invaluable to us this year. So for my own selfish reasons, I would love to keep him here, but as a big brother, he has to do what’s best for him and his family.”

Then a reporter asked Bryant: “If it got down to couple hundred thousand, would you kick in for it?”

Bryant, similar to the look he got used to giving when we’d ask whether he’d be picking up the tab for the Lakers team meals throughout the playoffs again, quipped, “I’m not the richest one in this building homey, I don’t know what you’re looking at me for.”

  • jack

    told you guys. i hope my man vujacic stays.

  • xxv112002

    Yeah, hope this dude stays with us. I really think that he’s the one who really earned the full MLE overall. Really hope he stays. Really hate to see him play against us. He’s really annoying to play against and he’s at the peak of playing his best basketball. He sacrifices his game, and he’s not the “whiner” type of guy. Really professional.

  • goodfella

    not the richest but certainly top 5. forget about the players, he’s the highest paid. but owner, part owner, exec. i say he’s top 5. what’s 20 gs? i mean sir barkley drops 400,000 in one sitting. c’mon kob. if it meant 20 gs to keep a player like that to win a championship, look when it’s all said and done nobody is going to remember how much money you made or how many diff. color of lambos you owned, they’ll remember the championships. and having a good bench and good player and friend like sasha, what’s 20 g’s really.?

  • Jack

    That just comes to show you Kobe’s maturation. I’m sure if it was a few years ago, he’d try to demand a crucial player to stick around.

  • ab4sure

    [Comment ID #41380 Will Be Quoted Here]

    You didn’t tells us anything… he will be back but only for the right price.

  • Mamba2410

    Ab4sure is right, and I think the right price is the MLE, Turiaf I think might just only get 4-mill or so, but hey, I’m not him, I don’t really know how much $ he desires…but still, MLE for both of them is great for me, now if we could only get rid of Radman for an expiring contract… maybe to get a good PF or PG…

  • xxv112002

    I wouldn’t give up Radman. I’d rather give up Walton. Radman’s gonna be better next season believe that!

  • Banzai

    Is SASHA married? does he have kids?

  • Peanut Butter Spread

    Reply to Banzai:

    Sasha isn’t married nor does he have kids (that we know of). I believe when Kobe said Sasha has to take care of his family, he meant Sasha has to do what’s best for himself, his siblings and his parents. I believe it was only until this year or maybe last year that Sasha was living with his parents.

    I’m sure it’s the same case with Bynum too. These guys are really young and close to their families. Andrew said the same thing about his situation, basically if the Lakers pay him enough to take care of him and his family.

  • JC