live: Oklahoma high school football: Week 8 scores and updates2020 Oklahoma election voter guide: Everything you need to know before Election Day

NewsOK: Oklahoma City News, Sports, Weather & Entertainment

Thunder: Coronavirus hits close to home for Danilo Gallinari

NEW YORK — Thunder forward Danilo Gallinari received news Friday that the grandmother of one of his best friends in Italy had died from the coronavirus. 

Italy, Gallinari's home, has been among the hardest-hit countries of the global health crisis. More than 4,600 coronavirus cases have been reported in Italy, according to the BBC. Of those, 197 people have died. 

"It’s a crazy and tough situation, but at the same time, the medical world is doing an amazing job in trying to stop it," Gallinari said. "To stop the situation we need the help of all the citizens. Everybody has to behave in the right way." 

Gallinari was born in Sant'Angelo Lodigiano, 25 miles southeast of Milan. His parents and grandparents still live in northern Italy, which has faced the brunt of the crisis in the country.

"They cannot really go out and have a regular life," Gallinari said. "I’m very close to my grandparents, and that’s the age that is more critical. I’m constantly talking to them every day." 

Teams in Serie A, the top professional soccer league in Italy, are playing in empty stadiums this weekend

The Athletic’s Shams Charania reported Friday night that the NBA “sent a memo to its franchises explaining that, due to the coronavirus outbreak, teams should be preparing to play games without fans in attendance.” 

Related Photos
Oklahoma City's Danilo Gallinari (8) reacts after a 3-point basket during the NBA basketball game between the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Sacramento Kings at the Chesapeake Energy arena in Oklahoma City,  Thursday, Feb. 27, 2020.  [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman]

Oklahoma City's Danilo Gallinari (8) reacts after a 3-point basket during the NBA basketball game between the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Sacramento Kings at the Chesapeake Energy arena in Oklahoma City, Thursday, Feb. 27, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman]

<figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-542f195f4ee5ecf24e4f733213cd9f21.jpg" alt="Photo - Oklahoma City's Danilo Gallinari (8) reacts after a 3-point basket during the NBA basketball game between the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Sacramento Kings at the Chesapeake Energy arena in Oklahoma City, Thursday, Feb. 27, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] " title="Oklahoma City's Danilo Gallinari (8) reacts after a 3-point basket during the NBA basketball game between the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Sacramento Kings at the Chesapeake Energy arena in Oklahoma City, Thursday, Feb. 27, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>Oklahoma City's Danilo Gallinari (8) reacts after a 3-point basket during the NBA basketball game between the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Sacramento Kings at the Chesapeake Energy arena in Oklahoma City, Thursday, Feb. 27, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure>
Joe Mussatto

Joe Mussatto joined The Oklahoman in August 2018 to cover OU football, men’s basketball and softball. He previously covered University of Kentucky football and basketball for SEC Country. Mussatto is from Oklahoma City and lives in Norman. Read more ›

Comments