More Trouble For Royce White, Rockets
The turbulent start of Royce White’s NBA career hit another bump Tuesday. This one will likely have greater repercussions than missing training camp.
With the Rockets planning to send White, a 6-8 forward, along with fellow rookies guard Scott Machado and forward/center Donatas Motiejunas to the NBA Development League, White skipped Monday’s game and Tuesday’s practice amid signs he has not practiced for days. The absences are unexcused, a person with knowledge of the situation said Tuesday.
Rockets acting coach Kelvin Sampson said he did not know why White did not attend Tuesday’s practice and did not speak with him Monday when Motiejunas and Machado were told of the plans to send them to the Rio Grande Valley Vipers.
But Rockets owner Leslie Alexander said there have been “internal repercussions which I’m not going to talk about.”
More foreboding, Alexander’s confidence in White’s long-term prospects seemed shaken since his enthusiasm with White’s potential during the summer league in Las Vegas.
“That’s tenuous,” Alexander said. “It’s tough to talk about something like that. I think we’re going to handle it internally. If he doesn’t work out, well, it’s tough to lose a draft choice.”
UPDATE: White released the following statement:
“In hindsight, perhaps it was not a good idea to be open and honest about my anxiety disorder due to the current situations at hand that involve the nature of actions from the Houston Rockets. The Rockets have been inconsistent with their agreement to proactively create a healthy and successful relationship. Failure to meet my requests for support will end with me being unhealthy and that is not a consequence that I am willing to accept to play any sport.”