According to Jonathan Feigen of the Houston Chronicle and Jason Friedman of Rockets.com, Royce White is among three players that are missing training camp today. Here are the reports:
White is not with the team and the Rockets cannot say if he will attend camp at all this week in McAllen.— Jonathan Feigen (@Jonathan_Feigen) October 2, 2012
McHale said he has 'no idea' when Royce White will join the team.— Jonathan Feigen (@Jonathan_Feigen) October 2, 2012
For any other player on the Rockets, missing a day or two because of a personal matter would be a non-story. Given Royce White's history of anxiety issues, the fact that he is missing the Rockets first practice is not only newsworthy but also very troubling.
According to Mark Berman of Fox 26 Sports, the reason is related to his anxiety issues. Here's an excerpt from Berman's story:
[White] told FOX 26 Sports the personal matters are related to the fact that he suffers from anxiety issues.
"We are trying to figure out a plan for me to be healthy and successful long-term," White said. "It's not really anything that's going on right now. It's more of trying to take a pro-active approach and trying to put together a solid plan.
"It is definitely linked with my anxiety sure, but it's not so much as far as my anxiety now. Basically what happened was my doctor, we discussed it, and it was decided the way the plan was now just wasn't logistically healthy.
"So what can we do strategically to try and improve the chances of everybody being successful in this situation, my success and the Rockets success? If I fail then that's not good for them either, because it's an investment."
White said he did not know how long it take before he rejoined the team.
Well, damn. Going into the draft, the topic of White's anxiety issues kept coming up, and many people expected him to fall into the Celtics' laps in the 20's because of it. After the Rockets took him, White and the Rockets spent much of the summer allaying people's fears by assuring that the issues were under control.
By the time we had gotten to media day, most people had already moved on from the subject. And yet right away, the issue manages to find itself on the forefront. Hopefully, he can get past these issues and be out on the practice floor in a few days. Unfortunately, the tone seems pretty pessimistic, at least from White's side.
Obviously, this is a basketball blog so we are going to discuss the basketball implications of this, but you have to feel for Royce. He's immensely talented, and yet clearly is dealing with a number of personal demons. All the best, Royce, and be back soon.