Thunder's Danilo Gallinari Funds 400 Coronavirus Testing Kits in Oklahoma City

Blake SchusterCorrespondent IIMarch 28, 2020

Oklahoma City Thunder's Danilo Gallinari plays against the Boston Celtics during an NBA basketball game, Sunday, March, 8, 2020, in Boston. (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer)
Michael Dwyer/Associated Press

The Oklahoma City Thunder were one of the first NBA teams to undergo club-wide testing for the coronavirus after Utah Jazz big man Rudy Gobert tested positive while preparing to play in OKC.

Thunder forward Danilo Gallinari is now paying those tests forward and then some. The 31-year-old has provided funding for 400 COVID-19 test kits and hospital supplies including face shields, N95 masks and gowns, according to ESPN's Royce Young

"There is a need, and so people in my position, if we can help, if I can help, it's something that I feel that I want to do and I need to do," Gallinari told Young. "It was a great to collaborate with the local institutions and be able to set this up. Since I'm here, I'm leading the quarantine here, this is where I am, so it feels even better to be able to help the situation here."

Gallinari has seen two of the countries hit hardest by the pandemic in up-close and personal ways. The native of Italy has been away from his homeland while the country deals with one of the biggest outbreaks in the world. Italy has 80,539 positive cases of the coronavirus with 8,165 deaths, according to the World Health Organization. In the United States, things aren't much better. 

CNN notes America now has 101,242 cases with all 50 states having been hit by the pathogen. That number includes 322 cases in Oklahoma with eight deaths. 

"Knowing what's going on in my country and what my family has been through both in France and Italy, if I can help mitigating or at least avoiding some of the troubles we had early on in Italy, and we can do better here in OKC, and the States in general, that's good," Gallinari said. 

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While the NBA remains on hiatus, Gallinari is self-isolating at his home in OKC. Both Gobert and Utah's Donovan Mitchell, who also tested positive, have made full recoveries. 

Gallinari's hope is that the public at large remains vigilant in fighting the virus and continues to flatten the curve.

"I think there is still time to contain the situation," Gallinari said. "It's very important the citizens understand how to behave and this is not something that will go by tomorrow or is gonna go away in a few days or a week or two weeks. It's something that's going to take months and so with a little help other like people like me can do all over the States in their local communities, hopefully we'll be able to contain the numbers."


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