As part of a multi-week developmental program, Royce White, the 16th overall pick of this year's draft, has been assigned to the Developmental League. The Houston Rockets made the decision after weeks of controversy surrounding White's anxiety condition and how he felt the team was handling it.
According to CSN Houston, White will play for the Rockets' D-League affiliate, the Rio Grande Vipers. TNT's David Aldridge reported via Twitter that the team is using the D-League assignment to help get White back onto the NBA roster and ready to play.
Royce White's D League assignment part of "multi-week" plan to work him back into organization, per source. Practiced w/Rox this week.
— David Aldridge (@daldridgetnt) December 30, 2012
White would likely have been drafted higher based on his skill level had it not been for his anxiety disorder. The Rockets, though, took a chance on him. They felt they could manage the disorder and help White deal with it. However, White remained away from the team after just a couple weeks into his career while he dealt with some issues related to the anxiety, and he quarreled with the team over their handling of his condition.
White had some trouble early in his college career. He was arrested for theft and assault while with the University of Minnesota. During that time he was also thought to be part of a laptop theft scandal, but he was never charged with anything. White eventually transferred to Iowa State where he finally began to shine and show off his true talent. He caught the eye of NBA scouts and was taken 16th overall by the Houston Rockets. Now, the team hopes this new plan of starting White in the D-League will help get him prepared to contribute at the NBA level.