Estranged Houston Rockets rookie Royce White appeared on HBO’s “Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel.” White said he realizes he may never play a game int he NBA but he won’t stop fighting for what he believes is the right thing. White confirmed he wants a doctor to oversee his playing time and team participation. He addressed claims he didn’t show up for practice, he said he did miss practice but it was for medical reasons.
Making the comparison between physical injury and mental health, White says that both are unavailable to play when an incident takes place. White’s anxiety issues go as far as him getting nervous at just the mention of the word plane. His last season in college, he traveled with his team to games including a preseason trip to Italy in 2011. White said it was because he trusted the staff at Iowa State but doesn’t have that level of confidence with the Rockets.
“If I was to play in the NBA now as it is without the protocols, without the safety measures, I would be risking my health. I would be risking my life,” White said. “What comes along with mental health that goes untreated? Alcohol abuse. Marijuana abuse. Suicidal behavior. Homicidal behavior. Those are things I’m not willing to risk to play basketball, to have money, to have fame.”
White says the suspension has caused him to lose sleep, changes in appetite, migraines, loss of focus etc.He also states that “stress is one of the number one killers of people and that America need to come to terms with that.”
Does listening to Royce explain his illness make you feel differently? The Rockets haven’t issued additional comments on White’s status with the team.
videos via HBO Sports