Sep 16, 2013, 7:28 PM EDT
You might recall a couple years back that in advance of his rookie season with the Philadelphia 76ers, Temple big man Lavoy Allen was ranked at the very bottom of ESPN’s yearly rankings of the Top 500 players in the NBA. The “Mr. 500″ nickname kinda stuck with young Lavoy, and after he had a rookie season that was much more productive than most predicted, starting 15 games for the playoff-bound Liberty Ballers, ESPN’s Henry Abbott even paid Lavoy a visit to apologize to him for the slight. The next season, Lavoy <a href=”“>rocketed all the way up to #232 on the ESPN rankings, and all was right with the world.
Until today, anyway. The ESPN NBA rankings have begun once more, and for the second time in three years, a Sixers player with no NBA experience is ranked #500, though this time it’s only technically a rookie–recently acquired power forward Royce White, who due to anxiety issues and poor fitness may or may not be playing for the Sixers this season, but is said to have All-Star potential if he could ever get his mind and body in NBA game shape. Royce even falls five behind Sixers teammate Tim Ohlbrecht, who has played a grand total of 12 minutes and scored three total points in his similarly young NBA career.
Unsurprisingly, Royce has had taken to Twitter to address the matter, responding understandingly (sarcastically?) to being the new Mr. 500 and retweeting a healthy cross-section of other responses to his ranking:
— Royce White (@Highway_30) September 16, 2013
— Chris Berritto (@cberritto24) September 16, 2013
— Jeff Morrison (@morrison_6) September 16, 2013
@Highway_30 im glad espn put you at 500 for now. It is going to make your story that much more inspirational. everyday 1 step at a time
— Harris Wichard (@HW_ABB_12) September 16, 2013
Will Royce be able to get the minutes with the Sixers next year–any minutes at all–to improve his ranking? Well, if he’s down, Hinkie’s probably down, but player and team still have a long way to go before that can become a reality. Here’s hoping we at least get to see some of Royce in action when pre-season tips off in three weeks.
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