As far as I know, many people have already said these are by far the best KD shoes ever. So, today I’m going to review the Nike KD 12 and find out, are they really that good?
Retail Price: $150
Cheapest Place to Buy: Amazon.com
My Rating: 4.7 / 5
I know a lot of people have been worried about the traction since it features a translucent rubber, which usually does not work as nice as solid rubber. So, I have to clarify that although this traction is not as good as the herringbone pattern, it does a decent job on gripping the floor. Every time I wore these on, I feel like I can take more control of my body, movements like quick cut or change of direction are easier to execute.
Despite the fact that these guys can play both indoor and outdoor courts. I do not recommend you to play them as outdoor shoes because it will cause a lot of wear and tear and they won’t last long due to the soft rubber. Yet, if you decide to use them as an outdoor option, they can still get the job done and help you perform at a high level.
As you may know, my go-to basketball court is extremely dusty and everyone is slipping all the time. That day when I got the shoe, I wore them on and went to that court as usual. Surprisingly, I didn’t slip through the entire session as it hold onto the floor the whole time while the others were slipping. If you play at dusty court a lot like me, only a few wipes will do just fine.
When I looked at the shoe, the first thing that came to my mind was the material looks cheap. However, they do feel awesome.
For the upper, these shoes are going with a synthetic translucent material rather than synthetic leather and traditional leather like always. In addition, the Quad Axial Flywire setup has increased the strength and flexibility of it while maintaining the lightweight build.
Another great thing about the materials is the tongue. Personally, the tongue is designed delicately since it is made of flyknit material instead of using the same material as the upper, it also has padding inside the tongue, which provides a softer and cozier feel around the feet.
Although the material are not premium, they are quite durable and pretty comfortable.
Full-length Nike Zoom Air has been, hands down, my favorite cushion of all basketball shoes.
Unlike the accustomed KD versions, Nike has eliminated the traditional strobel board and replaced it with a full-length zoom unit, stitching directly to the upper of the shoe and under your foot.
Apart from the full-length Zoom, there is another Hex Zoom Air in the heel area, which can deliver maximum impact protection and provide extra comfort. To be honest, I don’t really feel much from it probably because the full-length Zoom Air is sitting directly under my foot, but I’m sure it won’t affect the feel too much.
Another improvement of the shoe is cored out Phylon midsole. The purpose of the cored out holes is to restrict the Phylon midsole from compressing outward and force it to compress inward, which offers great responsiveness along with the full-length Zoom Air.
If you haven’t got a full-length Zoom Air shoe before, you have to try it.
For the support, the wraparound midsole is able to slightly cover your heel and forefoot, helping you to keep your foot on the footbed to maintain stability. Also, the full-length Zoom Air has provided a lot of heel support so that it won’t feel too soft or hinder your mobility.
For heavier players such as power forwards or centers, the shoe base is pretty narrow and you may feel you don’t have enough stability and secure from these. However, if you’re a guard, they will keep you agile, fast and allow you to move as quickly as possible.
The overall support for these shoes are pretty decent, but I think there is room for improvements especially for the ankle support. Comparing to the past KD models, the KD 12 has increased a few inches and becomes a mid-top shoe. Still, the ankle area is too wide constructed so that users may roll their ankles badly. In spite of the ankle area, I am satisfied with the support.
I went for half a size up for my wide feet and they felt great, except that the forefoot area was a bit tight, which has now accommodated with my feet perfectly.
These guys don’t really need to break in since once I put them on, they already felt great. As I wear them more and more, they even accommodate my feet better each and every time.
If you have wide feet or you prefer to have more breathing room from them, I recommend you to go half a size up. Even if they feel loose at first, they will do their job and accommodate your feet perfectly.
With the combination of lightweight materials and full-length Zoom Air, I felt so comfortable once I put them on. Also, they provide exceptional lockdown and stability, allow me to different kind of moves more controlled and nimble.
Though there are definitely some improvements that can be made to make the shoe even better, I think the KD 12 already have everything you’ll need. It is an all-round shoe that can cater to all your demand, regardless of you need great traction, great cushion or great stability, it will get your back.
In summary, the KD 12 is a great basketball shoe that I love so I will give it a 4.7 / 5.
There you are — the review of Nike KD 12. I hope you enjoy this article and if you can buy them for retail price or even lower price, I highly recommend you to get one.
If you have any questions about this pair of shoes, feel free to ask me a question and I’m happy to help you out.