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"The Machine" - Sasha Vujacic of the Lakers

"The Machine" - Sasha Vujacic of the Lakers English, baby! Video Lesson

Date: Mar 27 2009

Themes: Interview, Sports

Grammar: Phrasal Verbs

Intro

1. Learn Vocabulary - Learn some new vocabulary before you start the lesson.

2. Read and Prepare - Read the introduction and prepare to hear the audio.

Since when do robots have such cool hair? Sasha Vujacic is a man from Slovenia who plays for the Los Angeles Lakers, but when he’s having a good game, he is no man, he is a machine.

It’s pretty great to be human, but it means you can never be perfect. People get scared or tired and make mistakes. They feel pain and get nervous. But machines can do the same thing over and over flawlessly.

Imagine playing against a basketball player who seems like he can’t miss. He’s a machine programmed to make his shots and block yours. Sounds scary, right? Well, don’t be scared. Sasha Vujacic may be known as “The Machine,” but he’s all smiles, and one of the friendliest players in the NBA. Jason recently met up with him in LA to talk about learning languages, making friends and where he got his nickname.

3. Watch - Watch the video without reading the dialog.

Dialog

1. Listen and Read - Listen to the audio and read the dialog at the same time.

Log in to Listen

2. Study - Read the dialog again to see how the vocab words are used.

Jason

Jason

Sasha

Sasha

Jason:  Welcome to English, baby! I’m Jason, here with Sasha Vujacic of the Los Angeles Lakers. How are you today, Sasha?

Sasha:  I’m OK. Thanks for having me.

Jason:  You’ve played both in Italy and now in the United States and you’re from Slovenia. So you’ve had to learn two different languages. And then when you came here, how hard was it for you to learn English?

Sasha:  I knew English since I was probably eleven or ten. In school we always had English as a second language.

Jason:  So when you first got here, did you do any speaking Italian with Kobe?

Sasha:  Yes, I did since day one. He speaks really good Italian and we kind of clicked from day one.

Jason:  And so, your nickname is “The Machine.” How did you get that nickname?

Sasha:  I think it started when I made a couple of shots and I was on a roll. You know, on both ends, defense and offense. Our announcers on TV, they kinda started calling me “The Machine.” Fans kind of picked it up, carried it on, and that’s the nickname now.

Jason:  When do you call someone a machine? For people that don’t know, like, what makes someone a machine?

Sasha:  There’s so many reasons that you can call a person a machine. You can be a machine if you don’t sleep at all. You can be a machine if you don’t feel pain or whatever. Whenever you see a little bit of supernatural power in someone, you can call them a machine. I don’t know. It’s just funny.

Jason:  Is Pau Gasol a machine also?

Sasha:  I don’t know. I mean…They gave me that nickname so you can’t just give it to anybody.

Jason:  Sure.

Sasha:  So Pau Gasol is Pau Gasol. Everybody is a machine in their own way, but we just gotta do our thing this year and that’s win the championship. That’s all I’m thinking about right now. Machine or not, the championship is the most important thing.

Jason:  Definitely. Thanks so much, Sasha. Can I get you to give me a high-five and say, “English, baby!”?

Sasha:  OK. English, baby!

 

Grammar Point

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Lesson MP3

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Discussion

Sasha began learning English in school as a kid in Slovenia, but before he came to the US, he played basketball in Italy, so he learned Italian as well. When arrived in LA, he and Kobe Bryant bonded quickly because they both speak Italian.

One night, when Sasha was playing really well, the TV announcer started calling him “The Machine” because he was so hot, it seemed like he couldn’t miss. The name stuck. Soon, Sasha’s fans started using the nickname, and even making videos about it and posting them online.

As Sasha explains, anyone who seems stronger or better than a normal human can be a machine. If you get 100% on all your quizzes in school or can play a song perfectly from beginning to end, then you’re a machine. When was the last time you were a machine?

For more with Sasha, read the rest of this interview or visit his official site. It may also interest you to know that this Ebaby! high five was mentioned in the LA Times.

 

Comments

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mickee85

mickee85

Philippines

I’m not a big fan of him, but since I knew that he and Maria Sharapova are dating I started to like him. I love Sharapova so much and they’re both perfect for each other. They’re engaged now.

06:50 AM Jul 14 2011 |

the twilight

Libyan Arab Jamahiriya

i really keen on learning this language

01:56 PM Jan 26 2011 |

kpl

kpl

Taiwan

it seems so hard to me for clicking with little girls and boys since one day when i was a little boy. I pick it up by the time. Now , also can not like  a machine program stuff flawlessly or like a good basketball player shoots on a roll , but  i know that they are always welcome me to play with them . Maybe i should have a nickname as childrenplayer, ha ha .

11:21 PM Mar 28 2010 |

khaye-cee

khaye-cee

Philippines

i do love lakers team :) sasha is cute i love him hihi!

08:55 AM Mar 14 2010 |

wishtolearn

El Salvador

does anyone knows how to memorize these vocabulary in a faster way??

03:05 PM Nov 22 2009 |

amajr

Senegal

hi  Someone help me ! I have to do the toefl  this saturday

 

09:29 AM Oct 28 2009 |

Andy Hsu

Andy Hsu

Taiwan

ha i think his pronunciation is not bad, btw, i do really like LAKERS ha ha

11:28 PM Oct 12 2009 |

mmmggg

mmmggg

Peru

nice topic, the player speaks three languages, and he is an start in the basketball world.

07:53 PM Oct 09 2009 |

glearn

glearn

Slovenia

Tomorrow. But you should practise today. ;-)

12:48 AM Jun 02 2009 |

abhishekraj

India

this is my 1st lesson….i wonder when will be i able to frame such kind of english of my own? plz suggest.

12:14 AM Jun 01 2009 |

Mira_Memoir

Egypt

Sasha is very cool, and he speaks 3 languages  WOW!

06:58 AM May 26 2009 |

Chelsea987

Chelsea987

Bahrain

thanks alot for this report its very good and very clear for learning

02:05 PM Apr 19 2009 |

Chelsea987

Chelsea987

Bahrain

thanks alot for this report its very good and very clear for learning

02:05 PM Apr 19 2009 |

marco polo

marco polo

Cameroon

that is because he impressed people by what he did. I reaally think that we shoudl do everything we can in our position to show people that we like what we are doing, we like our job. of course wereally like it…......................Laughing

07:29 AM Apr 18 2009 |

glearn

glearn

Slovenia

Dear Angel,

Thats the fact everywhere in Europe. For example, take Nethelands. There were always the Germans, British, Frenchmen etc. walking around for centuries. And what can you then expect? :-)

01:37 AM Apr 16 2009 |

Meyra

Meyra

Turkey

He's pronunciation is really weirdSmile

01:46 AM Apr 09 2009 |

liberolupo

Turkey

Sasha Machinic :p

01:20 AM Apr 08 2009 |

Marcelolic

Marcelolic

Brazil

Being a Machine it means to be perfect or to be the maximun in what you do…So,in my job I'm a Machine ;) 

01:17 PM Mar 31 2009 |

Marcelolic

Marcelolic

Brazil

I’m machine! when I am working out :)

01:12 PM Mar 31 2009 |

tiagon85

Brazil

I´m always trying to do my best, so I can say i am almost a machine in that way. I think, we all must be the best one in what we chose to do, but, of course is impossible never making mistakes. The point is we never have to quit.

06:40 PM Mar 30 2009 |

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