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Thunder steadily builds chemistry on and off the court

Before beginning his postgame interview, Thunder forward Danilo Gallinari had to fulfill a promise he made to his teammates. In front of the mass of cameras and recorders, he paused to slide on his wide-framed aviator sunglasses.

“Yeah Gallo,” Dennis Schroder called from the back of the locker room. “Yeah!”

“There we go,” Gallinari said, smiling.

With the roster split evenly between returners and new additions, the Thunder has put an emphasis on building chemistry on the court.

“I think we are at a good point,” a sunglasses-sporting Gallinari said Friday, “but we have a long season ahead of us and a long way (to go). We have a lot of things we have to work on and get better. So, it’s just the beginning now.”

Off the court, the team chemistry seems to be coming along too. Schroder has been the locker room hype man during postgame interviews since the beginning of the season. He’s made a running joke out of asking Gallinari about his various pairs of sunglasses, and after the Thunder’s overtime win against the 76ers Friday, the Thunder took it to the next level.

As Schroder asked Gallinari where he got his sunglasses, Chris Paul joined the media scrum, holding up his phone to film.

Gallinari, who is usually stoic in such settings, couldn’t keep a straight face.

“Look at CP,” he said laughing.

Related Photos
Oklahoma City's Danilo Gallinari (8) celebrates with Chris Paul (3) after making a 3-pointer in overtime of an NBA basketball game between the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Philadelphia 76ers at Chesapeake Arena in Oklahoma City, Friday, Nov. 15, 2019. Oklahoma City won 127-119. [Bryan Terry/The Oklahoman]

Oklahoma City's Danilo Gallinari (8) celebrates with Chris Paul (3) after making a 3-pointer in overtime of an NBA basketball game between the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Philadelphia 76ers at Chesapeake Arena in Oklahoma City, Friday, Nov. 15, 2019. Oklahoma City won 127-119. [Bryan Terry/The...

<figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-b3daa017d01d9443ba5abf838f74d341.jpg" alt="Photo - Oklahoma City's Danilo Gallinari (8) celebrates with Chris Paul (3) after making a 3-pointer in overtime of an NBA basketball game between the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Philadelphia 76ers at Chesapeake Arena in Oklahoma City, Friday, Nov. 15, 2019. Oklahoma City won 127-119. [Bryan Terry/The Oklahoman] " title="Oklahoma City's Danilo Gallinari (8) celebrates with Chris Paul (3) after making a 3-pointer in overtime of an NBA basketball game between the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Philadelphia 76ers at Chesapeake Arena in Oklahoma City, Friday, Nov. 15, 2019. Oklahoma City won 127-119. [Bryan Terry/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>Oklahoma City's Danilo Gallinari (8) celebrates with Chris Paul (3) after making a 3-pointer in overtime of an NBA basketball game between the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Philadelphia 76ers at Chesapeake Arena in Oklahoma City, Friday, Nov. 15, 2019. Oklahoma City won 127-119. [Bryan Terry/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure>
Maddie Lee

Maddie Lee followed an NBA team from Seattle to Oklahoma City, she just took a 10-year detour in between. Lee joined the Oklahoman in October 2018 as a Thunder beat writer, fresh off a stint in Oxford, Miss., where she covered Ole Miss for the... Read more ›

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