OKC Thunder forward Danilo Gallinari undergoes appendectomy

Danilo Gallinari, OKC Thunder (Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE via Getty Images)
Danilo Gallinari, OKC Thunder (Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE via Getty Images) /

Newly acquired forward Danilo Gallinari underwent an appendectomy. He’ll be out of action until mid August but is expected to compete in FIBA World Cup.

This past weekend one of the newest members of the OKC Thunder, power forward Danilo Gallinari spoke of his desire to play for a contender. Gallo told a local Italian paper that would be his focus this coming offseason. Thunderous Intentions dove into how that might affect this coming season and highlighted how important it is for the 30-year old to stay healthy this season if General Manager Sam Presti wants to trade him and get value.

In the article, we noted some ill-timed health issues which have struck down the big man in his career. And, on the heels of that article we’ve learned Gallo will underwent an appendectomy which is slated to keep him out of action at least until August 12, 2019.

The news was reported courtesy of the Italian Basketball Federation who remain optimistic Gallo will represent their team in this summer’s FIBA World Cup.

"Late yesterday evening, Danilo Gallinari underwent an appendectomy. The intervention, carried out in laparoscopy at the Verona hospital in the presence of the Azzurro medical health staff, was perfectly successful.Danilo will have to observe a few days of rest and then undertake the rehabilitation process and return to work with his companions in the gathering in Rome (12/14 August).His conditions will be monitored daily by the national medical staff at the gathering in Verona."

Timing is crucial when it comes to appendix surgeries as Toronto Raptors forward OG Anunoby learned this past season. The night prior to the playoffs tipping off Anunoby’s appendix burst leading to an emergency appendectomy. Further complications arose post-surgery which meant the forward missed the entirety of the Raptors postseason title run.

That’s an extreme case, however, and most players can resume activity between 10 days to three weeks depending on the severity of the procedure and recovery from the operation.

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Gallinari is one of three NBA pros who’ll represent their Italian National Team at the FIBA World Cup 2019. San Antonio Spurs Marco Belinelli and recent addition to the New Orleans Pelicans Nicolò Melli are the other two NBA players on the roster.

Gigi Datome played briefly for the Boston Celtics also is on the squad. Alessandro Gentile was drafted by the Minnesota Timberwolves in the summer of 2014 but never played for the Wolves or in the NBA. The full roster was announced on July 12 and can be viewed here.

The World Cup this year carries extra pressure as seven teams of the 32 participating countries can qualify directly to the 2020 Olympics in Japan (who automatically gains a spot as host country). For the countries who don’t qualify it means playing in four wild card qualifying tournaments which is onerous given the sheer number of countries trying to garner one of those final four positions.

Notably, the American team has witnessed copious stars decline the invitation to play given the timing of the tournament this year. In spite of this, the U.S. remains the favorites to win the World Cup. The FIBA World Cup event will be held in China from August 31 through September 15.

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As for Gallinari, he is expected to make a full recovery, play in the FIBA World Cup and be ready to join his OKC Thunder teammates for training camp.