Recent Kentucky signee Jayden Quaintance is an interesting prospect. Here at On3, we are higher than the industry on the 6-foot-10, 225-pound center out of Raleigh (NC) Word of God, ranking him as the No. 4 overall player in the 2024 On3 150. Quaintance recently reclassified from the 2025 class into the class of 2024.
On3 leaves nothing to question when we talk about the objective of our rankings. The goal of our rankings is to assess a prospect’s long-term potential, ultimately manifested by the NBA Draft. Our ranking is not to assess who had the best high school career or who will be the best college player. This is why we will shoot to end each cycle with 14 five-star prospects following the lead of the NBA Draft Lottery. This can be different from others, but our vision with rankings is draft night.
On3 has Quaintance ranked No. 4, 247 has him No. 9, Rivals No. 11, and ESPN No. 14. Criteria can be different across the industry when it comes to players and the order they are ranked. So let’s break down why On3 is higher on Jayden Quaintance than the industry is with him.
Quaintance Carries Unique Athleticism
While many generally think of explosion when they talk about athleticism, the word can mean more than just that. When speaking about Jayden Quaintance, the explosive athleticism pops quickly. He plays aggressively around the basket and uses a quick jump off the floor to attack the rim, for dunks, in traffic. His explosive pop can be an intimidating factor for the opposition because, throughout the course of a game, he is continuously attempting to put you on a poster.
Along with the athletic explosion, Quaintance is also a fluid athlete. What I mean by this is his ability to change direction and move laterally. Despite being listed at 6-foot-10 and 225 pounds at 16 years old, Quaintance has great body awareness. On the defensive end, he is able to open his hips and smoothly change direction. He can also slide his feet with more perimeter-based forwards, causing trouble for them as they try to create facing the basket.
Quaintance has very good hand-eye coordination. His catch radius is vast, able to handle bad passes as well as balls thrown high or low, in traffic. He also has a natural touch, which also plays into his hand-eye coordination.
The entirety of Quaintance’s athleticism gives him positional versatility, on both ends, moving forward. Listed as a center, as he continues to grow his game, he has the physical makeup to guard down a lineup in space, and/or play in a switching-type or full-court system.
Quaintance’s Physical Presence
Certainly, the physical attributes of a player do not automatically make them a five-star, but it can be a good starting point. When looking at what a player brings to the table physically, there is not much that is left to interpretation.
Jayden Quaintance has a strong and physical frame. Listed at 6-foot-10, with good length, he has adequate size as he continues to move forward as a post player. Quaintance has broad shoulders and a frame that should continue to add good weight without losing much if any, mobility.
Quaintance does a good job using his length and athleticism to play as an even bigger presence than his listed height.
How does he Score?
As I mentioned above, Jayden Quaintance tries to dunk everything that is within five or so feet of the basket. This is what brings the crowd on its feel and what you see in the highlight reels as they circulate. At the high school level, this is also what acts as an intimidation factor. He is quick to the ball and quick off his feet. He is physically stronger than most in high school, while also possessing more explosive pop than many, especially those tasked to guard him.
However, once you settle in to watch full games of Quaintance, you see more to his game than just the power and explosion. He has touch, he has ball skills. Quaintance is a threat to grab and go off the boards. His handle is not sloppy as he pushes the break, and he has a good feel for pace and control. When Quaintance does not have anything, he will slow up the break, call a set, and get his team into offense.
In the half-court, Quaintaince is comfortable with the ball in his hands, facing the basket. He will line up at multiple levels of the court and become a threat. He has a quick first step off the bounce and will get to the rim within two or three dribbles from the mid-post to the three-point line. While his handle is efficient, it is not advanced. By that I mean, he is more than capable within three dribbles and in straight lines. He still needs to develop counters and changes of direction when his path gets cut off.
The interesting piece to his game, which has consistently developed over the past eight, or so, months is the jump shot. It is starting to become a threat, and something teams have to start acknowledging as they guard him.
The jump shot has a high release. There is still some excess movement with the load, but the release is consistent. Quaintance is comfortable shooting off movement but is better if he is stepping into the shot than if he is moving laterally into his motion. He can knock down the two dribble pull-ups, and, already at 6-foot-10, he uses his high release in traffic to get clean looks.
Jayden Quaintance’s dad, Haminn Quaintance, scored 1,354 career college points between stops at Jacksonville and Kent State. After earning first-team All-A-Sun accolades at Jacksonville, he transferred to Kent State where he earned MAC Defensive Player of the Year honors.
Hamin Quaintance was listed at 6-foot-8, 220 pounds. He averaged 11.4 points, 7.6 rebounds, 1.8 steals, and 2.2 blocks per game in 104 starts and 119 collegiate games.
Quaintance is Already Producing
Keep in mind, that Jayden Quaintance has a June 2007 birthday and is only 16 years old. This summer, he switched time between the Team Thad program on Nike’s EYBL Circuit and Team Loaded VA on the Adidas 3SSB Circuit. He played up at the 17u level with both programs.
Playing with Team Loaded VA in during the Adidas Championships, Quaintance averaged 11.0 points on 59.0 percent shooting from three. He averaged 6.8 rebounds, 1.8 steals, and 2.0 blocks per game. The featured matchup of the event was Quaintance going head-to-head with Five-Star Plus+ center Flory Bidunga, a Kansas signee.
In that matchup, Quaintance finished with 11 points (5-9 from the field) and six rebounds with three steals and a block. Bidinga finished with 13 points, going 5-11 from the field. Quaintance’s Team Loaded VA team won the game by 20, 74-54.
With Team Thad, Quaintance averaged 9.7 points and 5.7 rebounds. Last season, Quaintance’s Raleigh (NC) Word of God team played on the Overtime Elite Circuit. That circuit included players like Amen Thompson, Ausar Thompson, Jazian Gortman, and others.
Then, at 15 years old, Quaintance averaged 15.4 points, 10.9 rebounds, and 3.5 blocks per contest. He shot 54.2 percent from the field. He also gained international experience this summer, making the USA Basketball U16 team.
Quaintance traveled to Yucatan, Mexico to play in the FIBA Americas Championships, where he and his teammates walked away with a gold medal. He played 18.7 minutes while averaging 6.7 points, 6.5 rebounds, and 2.8 blocks per contest. Quaintance finished with a 10-point, 10-rebound, 3-block double-double in the gold medal win against Canada.
Typically playing up in age, against higher-level competition, Quaintance has consistently performed, and produced.
Projecting Quaintance Moving Forward
Looking at Jayden Quaintance’s game, you can see a few different outcomes for his trajectory. Still only 16, he will have to play two seasons after graduating high school before being eligible for the NBA Draft. There is still a lot of game reps and growth to be had.
One of the names that has come up with Quaintance is Bam Adebayo. This is not a one-to-one comparison, but there are some interesting pieces to it. Both players were early developers physically. They had great length, broad shoulders, and naturally strong bodies. The pair also both have unique athletic traits for players their size. Not only did their instincts stand out, but, at the same stage, so did their explosive pop and athletic fluidity.
Naturally, Quaintance will need to continue developing and fine-tuning all pieces of his game. There is a long way between now and when he will be eligible for the NBA Draft. While his game speaks volumes, there is still a lot of ceiling left to grow into. As he continues to smooth out his jump shot and work on playing off the bounce, his defensive instincts, rebounding, and ability to finish – with authority – around the rim continue toward consistent production.
Production, plus ceiling, plus physical gifts is a nice starting point for a prospect.