James Young declares for the NBA Draft

| April 17, 2014 | 0 Comments

James Young with the hammer midway through the second half of the NCAA National Championship (via @_MarcusD_)

Kentucky Wildcats freshman All-Southeastern Conference selection James Young will forego his sophomore season and enter his name in this year’s NBA Draft.

Young made his announcement via a release form the UK athletics department on Thursday, and he will be a remember of this year’s draft class after a memorable freshman season.

“My time at Kentucky has been special to me, something I’ll always treasure, but I feel that I’m ready to take the next step to the NBA,” Young said. “I’ve learned more this year, on and off the court, about life from Coach Cal and the staff and appreciate all of their guidance and support.

“I can’t say enough about my teammates; the journey helped us build a bond that we will always share for the rest of our lives.  I would like to thank the best fans in the country, the Big Blue Nation, and I hope you guys will continue to support me as I move on. I will always bleed blue. Succeed and Proceed!”

The Rochester Hills, Mich., native knocked down a squad-best 82 3-pointers, the seventh most in a single season in program history and second most by a UK freshman.

He shot 42.6 percent from behind the arc and better than 85 percent from the free-throw line in the NCAA Tournament.Young averaged 18.5 points and 6.0 rebounds in the Final Four en route to Final Four All-Tournament Team honors.

Young also collected All-SEC Second-Team and All-SEC Freshman Team honors.

“I’m excited for James and his family and the decision he’s come to,” head coach John Calipari said. “From day one, the NBA people who came to our practices in the preseason raved about him. 

“He’s done everything we’ve asked of him all season, investing himself in his brothers for the betterment of the team, and I think we all saw the end result in the tournament and Final Four. Whatever team drafts James is not only getting a superb athlete, they are getting the ultimate teammate.”

Young was a vital member of a UK squad that made a shocking run through the NCAA Tournament, and it was filled with memorable moments like the GIF pictured above in the National Championship.



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