They Had You Thinking OKC Thundercats
Before Brian Davis and Grant Long, Oklahoma City’s first set of NBA broadcasters was a pair of 30-somethings that go by the name Dante and Galante. The two, employees of the Orlando Magic, set up a live stream of the Orlando Pro Summer League back in July and quickly became fan favorites during the weeklong summer league for their wit and overall disinterest in the games. But around here, fans took to them because of how much airtime they gave the then yet-to-be-named franchise in Oklahoma City.
Galante, whose first name is George, is the Magic’s director of communications and will be inside the Ford Center on Wednesday when the Thunder welcome Dwight Howard and the Magic.
George was gracious enough to take a few minutes to reflect on all things OKC during its first ever NBA summer league.
Q: How did the summer league broadcast get started?
A: That was our third summer league this past summer. The summer league broadcast came about three years ago when we decided that we were going to video stream the games. And after the first day fans were kind of complaining. It’s a coaches cam. It’s essentially just meant to be for the coaches to look at scouting and that type of thing. So it’s a one camera operation upstairs. And the internet was just patching into that feed so they could give some fans some insight since it’s closed to the public. But they couldn’t recognize any of the guys. So we went up there the second day three years ago and kind of planned on doing it straight, trying to call the games as you would call the games. But the action in summer league is so bad, it’s borderline unwatchable so we decided to just start having some fun with it. We started taking e-mails, and the next thing you know we were barely even talking about the basketball game and everybody seemed to like that better than an actual broadcast.
Q: Who is Dante, your partner on the broadcasts?
A: Dante Marchitelli. He’s our radio manager. But then he also does our sideline reporting for home games on the radio. And he’s actually had a couple of games on T.V. as a sideline reporter as well for Magic T.V.
Q: Did you and Dante know each other long before starting? You two seemed to have good chemistry on the broadcasts.
A: We’re friends at the office. Dante’s been with the Magic for, I think this is his ninth or 10th season. And I’ve been with the team since ’95. So we’ve known each other for awhile, and we both have pretty similar personalities and we get along really well. So it just happened to be that we had pretty good chemistry on the air.
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