When Pete Sampras retired from professional tennis in 2003 he owned 14 Grand Slam trophies, a record at the time for the sport. Now he's down to 13.
That's because the Los Angeles storage facility where he kept much of his hardware was robbed three weeks ago and one of the prized possessions that went missing was a Grand Slam trophy. Many of the awards from 64 championship victories, two Davis Cups, his Olympic ring and six player of the year statues were also nabbed in the robbery.
"I was like, 'What?'" Sampras, 39, told the Los Angeles Times. "I thought there were security cameras. I thought these things were locked up tight. I was shocked."
According to the Times, Sampras said the police have no leads at this point but the investigation is continuing. Sampras said that police suggested he speak publicly about the incident now in hopes that it would help break the case.
The hard-hitting Maryland native, who currently lives in Thousand Oaks, Calif., with his wife and two sons, was most upset about not having the trophies to show his kids.
"I'm not one to gloat about trophies, or show them off," Sampras said. "I've never been like that. I just want them for my kids to see. They didn't see me play, but I'd like them to see these things."
They may never get the chance. There are, however, many awards still stowed away safely in the Sampras home and at Portland's NikeTown. These include the 13 Grand Slam trophies -- seven from Wimbledon, five from the U.S. Open and one courtesy of the Australian Open.
And it wasn't just tennis collectibles that were pinched. The crooks also made off with a Pearl Jam concert program signed by Eddie Vedder, a Carlos Santana-signed guitar and a piano bench autographed by Elton John.
"I Got Sh--" is a song on a Pearl Jam greatest hits disc -- and it could also be the soundtrack to this sad sporting episode.