Notebook: Sasha, Masha and Miss Fabulous

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Dinara Safina at the Hoover TowerSASHA AND MASHA: NBAer Sasha Vujacic was on hand to watch his girlfriend Maria Sharapova during a recent World TeamTennis showdown in Newport Beach, Calif.  But according to observers, his head wasn’t in the match.  Wrote the Daily Pilot’s David Carrillo Penaloza, Vujacic “seemed too busy looking into the stands, wishing someone would notice he played for the Lakers.”

SAY IT ISN’T SO: Former No. 1 Dinara Safina was spotted on the Stanford campus wearing a Minny Mouse-themed T-shirt that read: “Miss Fabulous.”  The Russian subsequently lost in the first round to Japan’s Kimiko Date Krumm 4-6, 7-6(0), 6-2…Following consecutive titles in Newport and Atlanta, Mardy Fish has withdrawn from the Farmers Classic in L.A. due to fatigue and an ankle injury.

TELL THAT TO LIEZEL HUBER — SHE OF $4 MILLION IN CAREER PRIZE MONEY: New Zealander Brett Steven asserted, “You don’t want to be a doubles specialist in the women’s game. There really isn’t a good living to be made in doubles.  You are only just scraping an existence.”

FREE ADVERTISING: Of the John IsnerNicolas Mahut Wimbledon marathon, John McEnroe said, “It was like a multi-million-dollar free commercial for tennis…But I hope to God it never happens again to two other players…If nothing else, Isner is sure going to get some endorsements – like Duracell…When you say the score [70-68 in the fifth], you laugh.”  Added Andre Agassi, “If it ever happens again, I hope I don’t see it.”

HEADLINES

MARDY FISH REELS IN ANOTHER

BIG FISH

THE NUMBERS

147 Degrees: On-court temperature reading at the Atlanta Tennis Championships.

17: Gigs played by the Bryan Bros. Band this year, including marquee shows in L.A. and San Francisco.

QUOTEBOOK

“I’m back to feeling healthy and I want to just play that way without the huge expectations or anything, just playing my game.” — James Blake

“It’s always nice when people want to hang out with you because it means you are doing well.  It’s when they don’t want to hang out anymore that you have to start worrying.” — Sam Querrey

“With the U.S. Open only a few weeks away, Mardy Fish might be the best tennis player in America — a pretty sweet notion if you’ve been among his loyal fans all these years.  Otherwise, a question: Has it really come to that?” — Bruce Jenkins

“He never quite had Andy Roddick‘s game. He never quite had the polish and Harvard pedigree of James Blake. He never had a twin, nor the physique of an NBA forward. So it is that, too often, Mardy Fish has been the odd man out of the discussion about American tennis.” — Jon Wertheim

“I want to be here on the court to shake their hands when they break the record.” – Mark Woodforde on the Bryan Bros., who are gunning to eclipse The Woodies’ (Woodforde/Todd Woodbridge) all-time mark of 61 doubles titles in L.A.

“The state of tennis I believe is on a bit of an upswing, so we need to take better advantage of the stories we’ve got.” – John McEnroe