Royce White has not showed up to the Houston Rockets camp citing his fear of flying. The Rockets knew about his anxiety disorder when they drafted him in the first round of the NBA draft. They are willing to work with him and cater to some of his needs because he is a good person and a special talent.
The relationship is not going to work out between the Rockets and White unless he is able to overcome his fear of flying. He has volunteered to purchase his own RV so that he can drive to games that are close enough. This is a genuine gesture from him but not the best alternative for the team as a whole. I am sure that game plans and schemes are discussed while traveling on the plane. If White is not there, he is going to become isolated from his team both on and off the court.
It is difficult to see this situation playing out because I was such a fan of White while he was at Iowa State. He had a rare combination of size and skill and was one of the most versatile players in the country. White is either going to have to overcome his anxiety or he is going to have to find a different career. The life of a professional athlete is not suited for a person that does not have the ability to travel on an airplane. I hope that he is able to overcome his disorder and make a career in the NBA. A hunch tells me that he will play out his rookie contract and be out of the league in a few years. Hopefully I am wrong.
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