UNC Basketball: Does James Michael McAdoo Have an NBA Future?

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UNC Basketball: Does James Michael McAdoo Have an NBA Future?
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With 107 all-time draft picks and 46 players taken in the first round, there's no question that North Carolina is at or near the top when ranking which schools produce the most NBA players.

The Tar Heels had another former player get taken in the first round in the 2014 draft, as P.J. Hairston shook off the turmoil of what should have been his junior season and parlayed it into being the 26th overall selection. Yet what's more notable is the UNC star who did not get drafted last week: James Michael McAdoo.

McAdoo left the Heels after his junior year, and when the 6'9", 230-pound forward made his decision public in early April, he had the "100 percent" support of coach Roy Williams. Draft Express projected him as a second-round pick in its scouting report, but that same report listed many concerns about McAdoo's skills and his inability to "dominate a college game."

McAdoo never heard his name called at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, one of 11 Division I players with eligibility remaining who went undrafted. He'll have to go the summer league route to try to make an NBA team, signing with Golden State for the upcoming Las Vegas-based portion of the league.

A handful of players will get contracts out of the NBA Summer League, but the odds are slim. Still, it will be McAdoo's best chance to impress again in a live setting since averaging 14.2 points and 6.8 rebounds for UNC during the 2013-14 season. Those were good numbers, but not that great, so he'll need to show more than stats in order to prove he's good enough to play in the NBA.

Going undrafted wasn't that surprising, according to many experts. Draft Express' report cited statistics from Synergy Sports Technology pointing out how bad he was as a mid-range shooter, something that's important for tweeners like McAdoo:

McAdoo converted just 22% of the 51 jump shots he took last season, easily one of the worst marks in this draft. The year before, he attempted 96 jumpers, and hit just 28%.

McAdoo will likely have to make much improvement on his shooting to make it in the NBA, but in the meantime, he has other attributes that should allow him to remain viable in teams' plans. Jonathan Wasserman, an NBA Lead Writer for Bleacher Report who also writes for NBADraft.net, has noted that McAdoo is a matchup nightmare when driving to the basket because "there just aren't many frontcourt players who have the lateral quickness to contain McAdoo's foot speed."

The Vegas stop of the NBA Summer League runs July 11-21 at the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas, with 24 teams participating. Golden State's roster reportedly includes former Ohio State point guard Aaron Craft, NCAA career three-pointer leader Travis Bader and former Saint Louis center Rob Loe, along with McAdoo. With those types of players around him, McAdoo has a chance to show off his unique skills but will also be able to feed off the talents of his temporary teammates.

At this point, McAdoo needs to show he can be a valuable addition to a team, not the star. This is a group that can help him to that end.

 

Follow Brian J. Pedersen on Twitter at @realBJP.

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