DALLAS (AP) A Texas jury sentenced the son of former NBA player Nick Van Exel to 60 years in prison Friday in the shooting death of a longtime friend.
Nickey Maxwell Van Exel, 22, received the punishment after his father wept on the witness stand and apologized to the family of the victim, Bradley Bassey Eyo. The same jury in Dallas County in North Texas found the younger Van Exel guilty of murder on Thursday.
Prosecutors had sought a capital murder conviction.
Nickey Van Exel fatally shot Eyo in December 2010 and dumped his body at Lake Ray Hubbard on the eastern outskirts of Dallas. His attorney had said the two were playing with a shotgun at Nickey Van Exel's Garland home and that Van Exel didn't know the gun was loaded.
Nick Van Excel, who played 13 seasons in the NBA including a stint with the Dallas Mavericks and is now a player development instructor for the Atlanta Hawks, testified about the happy times he and his son spent together, including with Eyo.
He recalled the time that he took his son and Eyo to a 2006 NBA Finals game in Miami between the Heat and the Mavericks.
``And they were about the only guys there cheering for the Dallas Mavericks,'' he said. ``It's dangerous when you go to an arena cheering for the other team.''
The elder Van Exel broke down at one point while speaking in court. He then apologized to Eyo's family.
``I'm really sorry to the Eyo family. Nobody should have to go through something like this. Nobody,'' he said, as he looked at Eyo's family members who were in the courtroom.
In the present, the Capitals are the Stanley Cup champions. But what does the future hold?
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All-Star Weekend is entertaining for fans and provides and much-needed break in the 162-game MLB season.
It’s not all just for fun, though. Following his start Tuesday night, Max Scherzer shared the benefits of being able to spend a few days sharing a locker room with players from across the league.
Being in the clubhouse, talking to veterans, talking to guys who have been here, getting to know everybody, getting the personalities, you can actually learn a lot from the other players in the league. They’re watching you, they’re watching your team and you get these conversations and it’s great. You’re talking about everybody and you find little things in the game that make them successful and what made you successful and see if you can get better.
Scherzer also didn’t hold back when talking about how great a job the city and his team did hosting the rest of the league. This is his sixth season as an All-Star, so he's speaking from quite a bit of experience.
It was awesome, what an atmosphere. I thought we were a great host team, all the other players in here loved the facilities and the treatment they received - D.C. did it right.
So according to Max Scherzer, the All-Star Game is great, but All-Star Weekend in D.C. is as good as it gets.
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