February 29, 2012; Columbia, MO, USA; Iowa State Cyclones forward Royce White (30) passes the ball past Missouri Tigers forward Ricardo Ratliffe (10) and Missouri Tigers guard Kim English (24) during the first half at Mizzou Arena. Mandatory Credit: Dak Dillon-US PRESSWIRE
Nobody saw this coming. Nobody. Royce White, the talented, do-everything forward from Iowa State, is now a Houston Rocket, and if there's ever a boom-or-bust pick, this is it. He's good at everything except free-throw shooting. He also has a much-publicized anxiety disorder, but at 16, I think he's great value.
White is the type of player who can really tie a bunch of loose knots on a team together. Can he become a guy the Rockets can build around? Probably not. But he could be. And that's worth picking, in my opinion.
The Rockets now face life without a big man to develop. Tyler Zeller is now out of the sweepstakes after going to Cleveland at eighteen, and now the Rockets have some 'splaining to do. Who is going to play center? The Rockets constantly miss opportunities to fill the center hole, and while I like the White pick, he could have been available at eighteen by all indications.
For more on White, here's some analysis from SB Nation's Iowa State blog.