Preseason Expectations: N/A.
The Good: Vujacic came over in the Terrence Wiliams trade that was met with some skepticism since many believed that T-Will would evolve into a great player relative to the last two months of last season. Plus, Vujacic hardly played for the Los Angeles Lakers and when he did, he stunk (3.45 PER in 4.9 mpg appearing in 11 games). He was obviously in Phil Jackson’s dog house, so what could seriously be expected from Vujacic in a Nets uniform other than having his fiancee Maria Sharapova gracing us with her presence at The Rock? Firepower off the bench, that’s what! Vujacic has played well in his 29 games and has shown why he’s called The Machine at times and has performed better than what most thought he would. Terrence Williams? He’s languishing on the Houston Rockets bench, re-tweeting his followers’ call for him to start for the team. Pathetic, but also good to see that the Nets had a point about T-Will since he’s not starting for his new team either.
The Bad: Something is getting to Vujacic lately – Carmelo Anthony rumors, Nets being the Nets and not the Lakers, missing the L.A. lifestyle, or maybe he’s just not that good. In his eight games in February, Vujacic is shooting the worst he’s shot since joining the Nets – 37.8 FG%, 33.3 3PT%, 76.5 FT% (he’s an 87.2% lifetime charity stripe shooter). After showing some consistent and looking like he found his groove with the Nets, Vujacic is now streaky. After hitting double-digits in eight of the first nine games in January, he has since only hit the double-digit mark in four of his last 15 games.
The Extra: Vujacic’s contract ends after this season and depending on how the rest of the NBA trading period ends up (3PM ET on Thursday is when the madness ends), Vujacic may become expendable. Will the Nets let him go or re-sign him? I’ve found his demeanor on the court infectious, but sometimes he makes bone-headed plays. However, despite the bad February thus far, Vujacic is a quality shooter and can be used to open up space in the box. Is he a starter? Probably not. Would he be an excellent sixth man? Maybe, but on the lower end. I’d be interested to see how the Nets roster looks after the trading period, but part of me wants the Nets to re-sign him, but the other part thinks he wouldn’t be worth the money.
Final Grade: Vujacic provides a spark off the pine and he’s been good at times, bad at times. However, he’s been playing more than Terrence Williams probably would have and has a better attitude, so that has to be part of the grade. Grade: B