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Relative: Woman slain by Chiefs player brought joy

Relative: Woman slain by Chiefs player brought joy

BLUE RIDGE, Texas (AP) The slain girlfriend of Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Jovan Belcher was a loyal friend who brought joy to others with her smiles and laughter, a relative said Thursday at a memorial service for the woman.

Belcher fatally shot 22-year-old Kasandra Perkins on Saturday at the Kansas City home they shared with their 3-month-old daughter, Zoey. He then drove to the Chiefs practice facility at Arrowhead Stadium, where coach Romeo Crennel, general manager Scott Pioli and defensive assistant Gary Gibbs witnessed Belcher commit suicide.

Perkins was from Texas, and family and friends gathered at a church in Blue Ridge on Thursday to remember her. Her great-uncle Ted Downing said Perkins considered Zoey to be the love of her life.

``She had a deep, deep understanding about the important things in life,'' Downing told mourners.

He recalled a time in Perkins' childhood when she got upset that a friend of hers didn't get a desired part in a play.

``She always had no shortage of friends - and I mean good friends,'' Downing said.

A white casket bedecked with a spray of white lilies and pink roses was the mourners' focal point at Ridgeview Family Fellowship in Blue Ridge, about 40 miles northeast of Dallas.

Steve Sweeney, senior pastor at Ridgeview, offered a prayer for God to bring healing to both her family and Belcher's family. He also prayed for strength for Zoey, who was at the service.

Downing told the about 200 mourners, including Chiefs team chairman Clark Hunt, that Perkins always called him her ``aunt'' after her brother had decided for some reason to call his wife ``uncle.'' He said that in recent months, Perkins had informed him she'd be calling him ``auntie'' to reflect the diversity in their multiracial family.

He said Perkins had a knack for making everyone she met ``feel like the most important person in the world.''

``To put it simply, Kasi loved life,'' he said.

According to a police report, officers were called to the Kansas City, Mo., home of Belcher, 25, and Perkins about 7:50 a.m. Saturday. Police found Perkins on the floor of the master bathroom.

Belcher then drove about five miles to Arrowhead Stadium. When police arrived, Belcher moved behind a vehicle, out of clear view of officers, according to police. He then knelt down and shot himself once in the head.

According to Perkins' obituary, she was born in nearby McKinney, just north of Dallas, and attended elementary and middle school in the Dallas suburb of Garland. She graduated from Anderson High School in Austin in 2009. She wanted to become a teacher.

Downing said after the service that it hasn't been decided yet who will raise Zoey.

The service included a slideshow of photos of Perkins as she grew up, from a shot of her with a cowboy hat on a horse as a young girl to posing in a graduation gown to photos of her pregnant and then with her daughter.

As the slideshow of photos ended, a note from Perkins' mother was shown in which she writes that she'll promise to make sure Zoey knows ``what a beautiful person her mother was.''

Downing ended his eulogy by saying, ``Goodbye for now, Kasi. We'll see you one day. I love you.''

Another service for Perkins will be held in Austin, where Perkins' father lives. Life Celebration Funeral Home said that service will be held Saturday, followed by burial in nearby Pflugerville.

Former Hoya Marcus Derrickson signs a two-way contract with Golden State Warriors

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Former Hoya Marcus Derrickson signs a two-way contract with Golden State Warriors

Leaving the Georgetown Hoyas a season early is initially paying off for Marcus Derrickson. 

Less than a month before what would have been his senior season at Georgetown, the 6-7 forward has signed a two-way contract with the Golden State Warriors. 

Derrickson nabbed the second two-way position on the Warriors after an outstanding Summer League translated to a solid preseason.

Fitting right into the Warriors deep-ball oriented scheme, Derrickson was 6-16 from three point range during the five-game preseason. He's a versatile stretch-four that continues to develop and improve on his outside game. 

By signing a two-way contract, the former All-Big East Second teamer will have a chance to get called up to the two-time defending NBA champions at any point this season for up to 45 days. The remaining time will be with the Warriors' G-league affiliate the Santa Cruz Warriors

This arrangement will earn Derrickson a contract of $75,000 and a prorated amount for however much time he is practicing/ playing with Golden State. 

If he is called up to the NBA for more than the allotted 45 days, then the Warriors are obligated to give him a minimum rookie contract. 

Derrickson continues to prove himself as the list of aspiring players dwindles. As each contract begins to near its end, the Warriors time after time offer another opportunity.

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Trading Jodie Meeks gives Washington Wizards much-needed salary cap relief

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Trading Jodie Meeks gives Washington Wizards much-needed salary cap relief

With a luxury tax bill of approximately $19 million on the way, the Washington Wizards gave themselves some salary relief on Monday by trading veteran guard Jodie Meeks to the Milwaukee Bucks.

The Wizards attached a future second round pick and cash to the deal and in exchange received a future second round pick of their own, NBC Sports Washington has confirmed. ESPN first reported the news.

Though Meeks, 31, was due to make $3.45 million this season, his departure saves the Wizards about $7 million because of projected tax penalties. That's a lot of savings in a deal that got rid of a player who had become expendable.

Meeks had fallen out of favor with the Wizards for a variety of reasons. He was due to serve a 19-game suspension to begin the season due to performance-enhancing drugs. The ban was announced the day before their first round playoff series against the Raptors was set to begin in April.

Meeks also underperformed last season in the first year of his contract with the Wizards and requested a trade in February. This summer, Meeks exercised his player option to remain with the team.

The Wizards were not likely to count on Meeks much at all this season because they traded for Austin Rivers in June to add depth at the shooting guard position. Meeks' role was made clear by the fact he did not appear in any of the Wizards' four preseason games against NBA opponents.

Meeks' tenure in Washington was a significant disappointment. The Wizards signed him last summer in hopes he could shore up the shooting guard spot on their bench. 

Though he stayed healthy for the first time in years, he never earned the trust of his coaching staff. The Wizards opted to rely more heavily on starter Bradley Beal, who logged the fourth-most minutes of any NBA player last season.

Now, they are moving on.

Meeks leaving the organization should have little effect on the Wizards, though it does leave them with a hole on their roster that needs to be filled. They currently have 13 players, one below the league minimum. The Wizards now have 14 days to add a 14th player.

They could sign a free agent, convert one of their players on two-way contracts (Devin Robinson and Jordan McRae) or make a trade. The Meeks deal gives them a $3.45 million trade exception.

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