Third time‘s a charm! I am back for another performance review on KICKZ.com. This time, I am taking a closer look at the Nike KD 13. Let‘s go!
Nothing special or unusual, when it comes to the overall shape of the KD13. A mid cut shoe with a more or less familiar silhouette without any good or bad extras or surprises. However, what really makes these stand out are the various color options. I am thinking of the recently released “Hype” colorway for example. And as we already had it with the KD line in the past, you can expect some more unique designs here 🔥. The “USA” colorway or the “Nolympics KD13” 😅, went for a Star-Spangled Banner inspired color scheme. Very clean and with a weight of 378 g, definitely on the lighter side. So technically and visually a well designed shoe.
A performance driven approach by Nike on this one as they used a thin lightweight textile for the outer layer (feels kind of like ripstop). Underneath it, you’ll find a more robust layer of a woven fabric and another layer of foam below that. Those basically hold the whole build together by providing stability where needed. Overall, the way the KD13s are constructed, remind me little bit of the Jordan XXXIV, just with thicker fabrics. I am definitely a fan of the material selection here and I like the concept of going full performance on these. However, the general feel of the materials could be a bit better as this is the signature shoe of one of Nike’s premier athletes. Apart from that, performance wise great stuff.
Nike went with a circular pattern on the outsole, which worked nicely for me. I was not even thinking about sliding or losing my grip for a single second. These bite hard. I did not feel any letdowns throughout the sessions and wasn’t feeling any inconsistencies regardless of the court’s condition at all. I can’t even remember wiping these. My only concern is the pattern itself. Since you have all those hollow circles, I am not sure what durability will mean for these in the long run. The rubber outlining the circles is not necessarily the thickest. I would certainly not recommend them for outdoor playing as they may not withstand the stress applied by a concrete court for too long.
Okay, you have to love this. The cushion is the absolute highlight on the Nike KD13. First of all, you have that Zoom strobel. For those who don‘t know what the strobel board is, that‘s the part of the shoe, which is directly under your insole. So basically what separates all of the interior from the midsole. And since it’s so close to your feet, this feels absolutely amazing. Nike went full length with this and you definitely recognize that bounce in your steps. Additionally, you get another Zoom unit underneath the ball of the foot. And even though I am a huge fan of court feel, the double-stacked setup does not take too much away from it. I still feel somewhat low to the ground and definitely light on my feet. I’d attribute that to adding the Zoom to the strobel instead of stacking them in the midsole to prevent it from getting even thicker. Awesome experience.
These fit a bit narrow, as Nike KDs seem to always do. Initially, my feet felt a little bit jammed as I was feeling some pressure coming in from the sides in the midfoot section. They are just a bit snug. Luckily though, the materials adjust nicely and I was losing that compressed feeling after a couple of minutes. From then on out, they just felt very comfortable and kept the foot in the right position without any slippages. So true to size worked well for me. For wide footers, I would recommend trying them on first. Like I said, they are a bit snug in the beginning.
Very solid and it starts with the fit. As mentioned above, I have not experienced any slippages as overall lockdown was great for me. Of course, the internal heel counter and the lacing system did their part too. I think, especially the latter has an underrated impact on this, as it leads the laces through those inelastic wings that connect directly to the heel to basically pull the foot towards it. What I also enjoyed about these, was the cut. The padded collar wrapped nicely around my ankles and provided the right feedback and “restriction” in that area for me. Lastly the bottom is not too rounded as you would for instance see it in the Kyries. Personally, I would have liked having an outrigger here though. But the midsole comes up a bit to give the foot some lateral stability and containment.
I really enjoyed playing in these. Given that I basically wasn’t thrilled at all playing in the KD11s, I never thought I would come near a DURANT any time soon. But obviously, I did. Yes, the price of EUR 150,- is rather steep and this is a high end option. I mean, this is the shoe of one of the biggest stars our game has, which already adds a premium. But of course the name alone would not justify this price for me. So let’s take a deeper look at what you get for your money. For that figure, you will arguably get one of the best cushion setups out there. The Zoom strobel is amazing and offers good impact protection and bounce. The traction is great. Not much more you need to add to that. Further, it is equipped with performance materials, which put these on the lighter side compared to many of its peers. Everything else from support, to design and the fit is also very decent and makes this all around a great sneaker that went straight into my shoe rotation. So despite the higher pricing, you absolutely get great value out of these and on top of that, an awesome performer to play in. My favorite release in 2020 so far.
Any questions? Just ask! Also let me know about your experiences! Find me on Instagram & Twitter under @ONEtothe2.