Apparently, not much more. The Rockets are now fining White for every day he is not with the team or does not attend therapy sessions arranged by the team, according to the Houston Chronicle.
By all accounts, White is an immensely talented 21-year-old rookie power forward. (I don’t watch much college basketball, so I’ve never seen him play.) He also has an anxiety disorder that often manifests itself in a fear of flying, which makes it kind of hard to be an NBA player.
White missed training camp and the early portion of preseason while he and the Rockets developed a two-pronged plan of travel and treatment, arranging for him to be driven to games whenever feasible and scheduling therapy sessions with Dr. Aaron Fink of the Baylor College of Medicine.
But White has been blowing off those sessions. He also has been blowing off games and practices since Sunday. He also has used a press release and his Twitter account to blast the Rockets, saying the team used his condition against him to deny him the ability to earn playing time, leading to a D-League assignment he has ignored.
Right, Royce. That’s exactly what Alexander and Morey want to do. They want to invest a minimum of $3.364 million in a player they envision as part of their rebuilding process and then do all they can to impede that player’s development.
During training camp, White’s condition became a hot topic of the mainstream media. Everyone and their mothers wrote stories filled with boo-hoo-hoo anecdotes that tugged at our heartstrings and asked us to squeeze another poor soul into our sympathy bucket.
Gimme a bleepin’ break.
Here’s what Alexander and Morey should do, in this order: (a) Offer White a plan where he plays only home games while treating his condition; (b) Immediately begin exploring trade options for White. If a team offers a second-round pick, take it and be done with him; (c) Cut him and eat the money.
And if White thinks that (c) won’t happen, he is kidding himself. This offseason, Morey cut 10 – Ten! – players he acquired in trades. He used the amnesty clause on Luis Scola, paying him to play elsewhere. His willingness to purge the roster of anyone that does not fit his rebuilding plan is chillingly evident.
And Morey wouldn’t be the first GM who was dead wrong on a first-round pick with huge question marks and cut his losses early. Golden State bailed on Chris Washburn. Dallas turned its back on Leon Smith. Even Houston – before Morey’s time – gave up on Eddie Griffin. Joseph Forte. Ed Gray. Kevin Brooks. The list goes on and on.
To the PC police who sit around waiting to be insulted so they can hand out holier-than-thou scoldings, here it comes.
This is the NBA. It stands for No Babies Allowed. White said he has an anxiety disorder, not an adulthood disorder. Grow up.
On to the rankings.