Houston Rockets rookie forward Royce White didn't play in Monday's home game against the Miami Heat, and he didn't practice Tuesday.
Beyond that, the facts regarding his status with the team were in dispute.
In a prepared statement, White said he is dealing with an anxiety disorder and that the team is being unresponsive to his needs.
The Rockets, meanwhile, were considering demoting him to the Rio Grande Vipers of the NBA Development League, the Houston Chronicle reported. According to the newspaper, coach Kelvin Sampson did not know why White missed practice Tuesday, and he hadn't talked with the player Monday either.
Rockets owner Leslie Alexander told the Chronicle, "I think we're going to handle it internally. If he doesn't work out, well, it's tough to lose a draft choice."
White's statement read, "In hindsight, perhaps it was not a good idea to be open and honest about my anxiety disorder -- due to the current situations at hand that involve the nature of actions from the Houston Rockets. As a rookie, I want to settle into a team and make progress; but since pre-season the Rockets have been inconsistent with their agreement to proactively create a healthy and successful relationship.
"At this point, the Rockets are aware of my position and the reason for my absence, any other response is inaccurate. This is important to me, it is a health issue. I must advocate for my rights, it is a player-commodity league -- the failure to meet my requests for support will end with me being unhealthy and that is not a consequence that I am willing to accept to play any sport."
White, 21, has not played in a regular-season game for Houston. He began his collegiate career at Minnesota in 2010, but he left the school following legal difficulties. White played last season for Iowa State, where he contributed 13.4 points, 9.3 rebounds and five assists per game. The Rockets made him the 16th overall pick in this year's draft.