In a letter to Royce White shortly after the rookie stopped attending games and practices in November, Rockets GM Daryl Morey recounted the back and forth that had taken place to that point and urged White to show up for work, "just like any other player." The letter also claims that before the Rockets drafted him 16th overall last June, White misled the team about his fear of flying, as Ben Golliver of SI.com reveals.
"To revisit from the beginning, before we drafted you, you told us that your fear of flying was not an issue and that you were ready to be an NBA player. Shortly after we drafted you, you apologized for having to mislead us," reads an excerpt of the letter.
David Barron of the Houston Chronicle shares more from the letter. The information comes via advance copies of White's interview on HBO's "Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel," set to air Tuesday. The televised feature uncovers a document that White wrote along with his doctor stating that mental health should be treated as a medical condition. White wants to have it made as an addendum to his contract, but that would violate the terms of the CBA.
White also reportedly wants the team to hire a doctor who would assess him before each game to determine whether he's fit to play through his mental illnesses. He suffers from mental health issues including generalized anxiety disorder and obsessive compulsive disorder, as well as a fear of flying. White, who has yet to make his regular season debut, has been away from the team for more than two months. Houston coach Kevin McHale said before last night's game that he hasn't seen or spoken to White in more than a month.