Rockets Rookie Royce White Refuses Assignment to D-League

Donald WoodFeatured ColumnistDecember 30, 2012

Houston Rockets rookie forward Royce White was assigned to the organization’s D-League team Saturday (h/t Comcast Houston), but he has reportedly refused to accept the assignment, according to Mark Berman of Fox 26 Houston:

Rockets F Royce White issues statement saying he is not accepting assignment to the NBA Development League. More coming

— Mark Berman (@MarkBermanFox26) December 30, 2012

Publicist 4 Royce White, China Myers, confirms White not accepting assignment to D-League "until a mental health protocol is in place."

— Mark Berman (@MarkBermanFox26) December 30, 2012

The No. 16 overall pick of the 2012 NBA draft has been plagued with an anxiety disorder and has been very vocal about what he perceives as a lack of support from his new team.

NBA insider David Aldridge is reporting on the situation with White and why he says he is upset with Houston for sending him to the D-League:

Royce White's D League assignment part of "multi-week" plan to work him back into organization, per source. Practiced w/Rox this week.

— David Aldridge (@daldridgetnt) December 30, 2012

Royce White says he won't play for Rockets' D League team, citing "unsafe" atmosphere of team officials making mental health calls.

— David Aldridge (@daldridgetnt) December 30, 2012

In statement, White says he wants to play, but only "with the collaboration and recommendation of trained professionals."

— David Aldridge (@daldridgetnt) December 30, 2012

White says HOU has only given an "image" of support, & provided info that is "extremely misleading, and a lot of times totally inaccurate."

— David Aldridge (@daldridgetnt) December 30, 2012


What It Means

With such a high pick in the draft spent on the very talented forward, the organization doesn’t want to give up on the potential star.

As much as the team claims it wants to accommodate the talented forward, though, there is a serious issue if White still feels the way he claims.

No matter what the case, mental issues cannot be discounted.


What’s Next?

White has yet to play with the Rockets in his rookie season, and the fact that he will not accept the assignment to the Rio Grande Valley Vipers is indicative of where this situation is heading.

If White can’t come to a suitable agreement with his current team, Houston will either have to trade the young star or cut him loose.

The biggest obstacle to overcome for any team that will then try to sign White is the anxiety disorder he suffers from and the issues that can come of it.

After all of the drama over the last few months, Houston will likely not be able to find a trade partner and will be forced to cut ties with the young star.


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