Report: Rockets' Royce White will return to D-League

Royce White will return to the Vipers. (Getty Images)
Royce White will return to the Vipers. (Getty Images)

The saga between rookie forward Royce White and the Houston Rockets has been well documented. After a promising summer league experience, White immediately started butting heads with the organization in regards to safety he felt wasn't being provided for his anxiety disorder. He publicly flamed the organization multiple times before finally coming to an agreement with the Rockets and accepting a D-League assignment with the Rio Grande Valley Vipers.

After playing 12 games with the Vipers, White left the team a week ago to return to Houston. He said he was following the advice of a team physician with the Rockets. He wasn't returning to the Rockets; he was just returning to the city of Houston. 

Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports is reporting that White will now head back to the Vipers in the D-League to avoid another suspension.

After leaving without permission recently, No. 1 draft pick Royce White will return to the Rio Grande Valley Vipers of the National Basketball Developmental League, sources told Yahoo! Sports.

White, who lives with an anxiety disorder, stated a team doctor told him that it would be healthier for him to leave the team a week ago, but multiple sources told Yahoo! Sports that no organizational permission had been granted to White.

At the risk of earning his second suspension without pay this season, White, the 16th pick in the 2012 NBA draft by the Houston Rockets, planned to return to be in uniform for the Vipers game Tuesday night against Tulsa.

This is odd. White said the team physician advised him to return to the city of Houston and leave the D-League team, but Woj is reporting he left without permission. Basically, the physician could have suggested White needed to leave the Vipers, and before having it cleared by the Rockets as a course of action, perhaps White just decided to pack his stuff and get out of town.

White leaving without permission and then returning to the D-League within a week is just another bizarre turn in his early (and possibly brief) professional career. The problem with the past few months for White and the Rockets isn't exactly what is being done but that we don't really know what's going on. People see White as a malcontent and a troublemaker. White seems to see himself as a pioneer or a martyr. He feels he's fighting for many and many feel he's simply trying to get even more accommodations. 

All the while, we're left wondering what's going on behind closed doors. We're unaware of what has happened and what has been said. We really only know what White has been willing to divulge to the public. In the process, we have to parse what is the truth and what is an exaggeration without any real evidence to believe one side or the other.

With neither the Rockets nor the Vipers commenting on the things surrounding Royce, everybody is still left in the dark. 

CBS Sports Writer

Zach Harper likes basketball. Some would even say he loves it. He's also an enthusiast for everything Ricky Davis, Rasheed Wallace, Nic Cage, and has seen the movie Gigli almost three times. He's been... Full Bio

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