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2014 NBA Draft: North Carolina's James Michael McAdoo declares

Tar Heels junior forward James Michael McAdoo declared for the 2014 NBA Draft.

Tom Pennington

The North Carolina Tar Heels will lose forward James Michael McAdoo to the NBA Draft, the school announced Thursday. McAdoo felt like the time to leave felt right after his junior season.

"I just feel I am ready to play at the next level and excited about that challenge," McAdoo said. "I had chances to go after my freshman and sophomore years but was more excited about coming back to school then. Right now I am excited about fulfilling my dream to play in the NBA and do what I have to do to take that next step."

McAdoo, a 6'9, 230 pound forward, averaged 14.2 points, 6.8 rebounds and 1.7 assists per game in his junior season and will leave the Tar Heels in decent shape. Coach Roy Williams should have sophomore forward Brice Johnson and freshman big man Kennedy Meeks return next season.

A top-10 player in his class and McDonald's All-American coming out of high school, McAdoo was projected by DraftExpress to go in the second round of the 2015 draft. His decision comes as a slight surprise. During his freshman season, he struggled behind a UNC frontline that included John Henson, Harrison Barnes and Tyler Zeller, and though he had a considerable jump in production from his freshman to sophomore seasons, he didn't improve from a statistical standpoint over the last two years.

Limitations wouldn't make it surprising, however, if McAdoo was a borderline first-round pick as a fluid athlete with budding skills that could be harnessed to help him find an NBA role. He's a smart defender and though he lacks offensive polish could still be viewed as having enough untapped potential.