Former DeLaSalle, Hopkins, Gopher and Iowa State star Royce White could make his NBA debut tonight when the Sacramento Kings play the San Antonio Spurs, the Sacramento Bee reports.
White was a first-round pick in the 2012 NBA Draft by the Houston Rockets, but he and the Rockets could never come to an agreement on how to best handle White's generalized anxiety disorder and fear of flying.
His relationship with the Rockets fell apart and he was eventually traded to the Philadelphia 76ers. A brief stint there came to an end and White was out of the NBA until the Kings signed him to a 10-day contract on March 6. He signed a second 10-day contract earlier this week.
White says his disorder won't be a problem with the Kings.
“I think (the issues) kind of resolved themselves over time,” White said Thursday. “Just me being in the league for a year and a half and having things be on the table with the league and the union and discussing it put this organization in a better position to handle things. It’s been so good we haven’t even had a discussion about anything. That’s exciting.”
White's first practice with the Kings was yesterday, and coach Michael Malone said he was impressed with White's strength, passing and basketball intelligence, according to the Sacramento Bee.
White's start in Sacramento seems to be going well. His career in Houston will be forever stained by Rockets general manager Daryl Morey saying White is the worst first-round pick in NBA history.
“I take some sort of pride that you could argue that Royce White is the worst first-round pick ever,” Morey said earlier this year. “He’s the only one that never played a minute in the NBA that wasn’t just a foreign guy staying in Europe. It just shows we swing for the fence.”