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adidas Harden Vol 2 Performance Review | AnotherPair

adidas Harden Vol 2 Performance Review

The Harden Vol 2 is a nice basketball shoe off the court, but it did not impress me on the court.


adidas harden vol 2 performance review anotherpair traction

Let’s cut straight to the chase: the traction on the Harden Vol 2 let your boy down something fierce. The traction performed well right out of the box…for about two days.

After the rubber breaks in the traction will decline full speed ahead. On dirty courts, I was wiping more than I like to, and these things pick up dust like nobody’s business. The traction had me out there like I was competing in the Winter Olympics – figure skating style.

On a clean court, the traction was solid. As long as the court conditions are good you will be fine.

adidas harden vol 2 performance review cushion

I’m sure you guys already know what I’m about to say right? You guessed it: Booost is life…well, a different life, because this setup is a bit different from other Boost basketball shoes.

This year, a much thicker piece of Boost is implemented in the Harden Vol 2. However, don’t expect this thicker boost to be as bouncy as other performance models that we’ve dealt with before. I am not saying the Boost isn’t good, it is, I’m just that it seems like adidas went with a more impact protection focused setup this year. It was great for impact protection and I’d like to see this setup on more releases in the future.

adidas harden vol 2 performance review anotherpair materials

Materials are pretty basic on the Harden Vol 2. ForgeFiber, a reinforced textile mesh is used at the forefoot while synthetic paneling makes up the rear. The mesh gets its strength from TPU-coated fibers, and they add support to the mesh — it does a great job at containing the foot. While the materials are pretty basic — it’s all synthetic here — they keep the weight of the upper down.

adidas harden vol 2 performance review anotherpair fit

The fit on the Harden Vol 2 is true to size. Wide-footers may be able to go true to size but I would try on in-store. The shoe fits pretty snug and at the midfoot there’s an elastic-like band that may cause discomfort for some people. It is also an ounce heavier than the Harden Vol 1 (just a note for people that prefer lightweight

adidas harden vol 2 performance review anotherpair support

Support on James Harden’s second signature was pretty good. With an outrigger that is as wide and as thick as the one used here you’re bound to get good support. The wide base here is like standing on a plank of Boost foam.

The one-piece bootie does a great job at containing the foot while providing you with a compression-like feel — I love how these felt on-foot. The mesh was strong enough to support every move I made on the court and keep me atop the footbed with no issues.

I did have a bit of an issue with the heel lockdown, but once I customized the lacing system to my liking — those holes aren’t for decoration — I was able to get my heel locked into the back of the shoe.

Unless you play on crispy clean courts the Harden Vol 2 isn’t a shoe that I would recommend people buy because there are a bunch of better options on the market. The traction was just too inconsistent for me to enjoy in these.

However, I do recommend this Harden if you want to rock something swaggy with tons of Boost. I think it looks incredible worn casually.

  1. Is the traction on these as bad or worse than the Jordan 31’s? That’s my baseline for bad traction. If a shoe is as bad or worse than the Jordan 31’s it’s an easy “do not cop for any reason unless you’re trying to slip and bust your head wide open”.

    1. The 31’s were scary to play in. The traction seemed to just let go at the most random times. After a slip or two I just couldn’t feel comfortable playing in them so into the closet they went. Horrible shoe.

  2. It’s too bad. I just don’t understand how a company like Adidas spend $200 mil on a player like Harden and then mess up something as fundamental as traction. Especially when they got it so right in the Harden 1s. It just doesn’t make sense.

  3. What happened to a 6th man rating is still good? It still means 7or8 out of 10, right? Or is it 6 or 6.5 out of 10 now?

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