No team in any sport wants to admit that they wasted a draft pick, but it’s time that the Houston Rockets did just that. Despite warnings that Iowa State power forward Royce White had mental issues and could possibly have problems, the Rockets went ahead and drafted him 16th overall in the 2012 NBA Draft. White has yet to appear for the Rockets and likely never will. He’s a lost cause and the Rockets would be best to cut ties with him.
The problems with White began shortly after the draft. He wanted special treatment from the team which included unique travel accommodations due to air travel anxiety. On Saturday the Rockets announced that the team had come to an agreement with White that would see him joining the team’s D-League affiliate, the Rio Grande Valley Vipers, on Feb. 11.
Judging by his actions, White is a person who either doesn’t have the ability to or refuses to function like an average adult. Rather than working hard to be successful, White wants everything handed to him, using excuses to clear himself of responsibility. This is not the type of person a team wants in an NBA locker room. Those type of people cause problems.
Despite their inconsistency, the Rockets seem to have a good locker room with good leadership. As the team is built, they are close to a contending team. The addition of someone like White could disrupt that team chemistry and therefore hurt the team on the court. Even with his undeniable talent, he would be a cancer in the locker room.
First round draft picks are very important in the NBA. A young player can come in and make all the difference for a team that is struggling or can push a nearly contending team to compete for a title. At the same time, most professional athletes have tremendous egos and are unwilling to work well with others if they don’t get their way. If a mistake is made in bringing in troubled player, as the Rockets did with White, it’s better to cut ties and go on having learned a lesson.
White has the talent to come in and be a difference maker for the Rockets, but it’s obvious that he doesn’t have the mental ability to coexist with others. If the Rockets bring him into their locker room, the trouble he’ll cause will be more damaging than what he gives on the court. He’s a lost cause and it’s time for the Rockets to give up on him.