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First Impression: Jordan Melo M8


Jordan Brand has been getting bashed left and right with their performance lineup yet they have all been excellent performers, here’s hoping the last of the big four signature models (Fly Wade 2, CP3.V & Air Jordan 2012) are just as great as the rest.

Hit the jump for more…


Traction – Herringbone is back again and I couldn’t be happier. There are a few sections on the outsole that feature texture only which as a Guard I think may hinder their performance a bit due to placement however, these are not Guard shoes and the rest of the build emphasizes this greatly.


There is a small area of traction that is recessed into the forefoot of the outsole, this I believe ties in with the cushion setup. It should compress upon quick jab steps, which is something Melo’s known for, and offer some additional traction for those who may play similar.


Cushion – We have a combination setup… not something I personally enjoy but these may work out after trying them on.


The heel has a notch made of rubber but once enough pressure is applied it should compress a bit to offer some additional relieve from harsh or strong landings.


In the forefoot you have a 10mm Zoom unit in place; I actually don’t like these believe it or not. Typically this style of Zoom is too mushy for me. The last shoe I played in with this size unit (not including the Jordan 2012 & Kobe VII) was the LeBron VII Post Season. It was placed in the heel and felt as if the heel portion was collapsing on me.

This setup is more embedded into the midsole and the lateral forefoot section, while exposed, is supported by a TPU cage. When I put these on they not only offered cushion but they didn’t feel as if I were sinking into the ground so I think these will play nicely in the forefoot area.


Materials – There are quite a few overlays going on with the upper… again, not something a Guard would look for but for Forwards and even some light on their feet centers, this is ideal.


This particular version has nubuck, Flywire which is then followed by patent leather. With the patent leather being the strongest of the three, it’s been placed along the forefoot and mudguard areas for durability and strength. The midfoot section is where I have already noticed the placement of the overlaid materials affecting the fit, this would be the case no matter the position you play. On the right (medial side closest to the forefoot) you can see the materials bow out a little. It’s a bit of an awkward flex and could have used a modified design to help with forefoot flex while retaining shape in order to keep the fit secure in this location.


Fit – The fit is nice and secure overall. Padding is full and smooth without any noticeable hotspots, at least from a basic try on. There is a quarter sleeve inside which is attached to the tongue and covers the forefoot area.


The heel features an additional layer of materials, just like the CP3.V, to help cup the heel and keep it in place. After tying them up & moving around a bit, I did not feel any area which was not secure so they should do their job as far as keeping the foot stable.


Ventilation – The only area with some ventilation is the tongue. The fit is secure enough to where this shouldn’t pose a problem for your foot slipping inside the shoe which is better than having a low air flow shoe with an improper fit. One thing to note is that the tongue is decently padded so lace pressure wasn’t bad at all so some people may enjoy that.


Support – The upper itself feels quite supportive and will keep your foot where it’s supposed to be. Then you have the TPU cage which runs through the lateral side full length wrapping itself under the arch of the foot and up around the medial side. This has limited the overall flexibility of the shoe, that along with the thick midsole, but again… this is not a shoe built for Guards. For power players with a quick first step this setup is exactly what you’d need to remain agile yet nimble.


With a performance sneaker such as this I have to go about the review in a totally different frame of mind. I can’t be too picky with certain attributes as they were not designed with me (a Guard) in mind. This is how I go about reviewing LeBron’s signature line as well so if I ever mention that something didn’t work well for me personally, that’s just me speaking in terms of what a Guard would need. On the other hand, if a shoe like this performs greatly, LeBron 8 V1 & 2, from a Guard perspective then they will be suitable for multiple positions on the floor.


  1. These shoes seem like good performance shoes. Also I am just a bit curious, but about how many pairs of basketball shoes do you have? It has to be at least 75 or something for sure, but you can always see those different boxes on the shelves and thee are so many! It’s gotta be hard to find a certain pair you are looking for sometimes. But if you know how many or about how many could you tell me? Thanks and I also wanted to show you some other brands of basketball shoes that you may want to consider reviewing: They are a company called Protege and all of their shoes are under $50 but they look nice and seem to perform well, they are only at KMart, but here are their websites: http://protegemvp.com/ , http://www.kmart.com/shc/s/search_10151_10104?keyword=protege&vName=Shoes
    Then there is this other brand called Above The Rim who have some low priced shoes, but they look kinda cheap. They have shoes at Payless and shorts at Finish Line, but here are their shoes: http://www.payless.com/store/catalog/brandlisting.jsp?pageSize=20&trail=1014%3A1600001&catId=cat10376&brandId=1600001 , http://www.abovetherim.com/ .
    I know that was a lot, but just wanted to inform you about these. Just an idea, but you probably need to focus on the big name shoes and you are probably very busy with that. Thanks for taking the time to read comments, especially long ones like these and thanks for taking time to review shoes all the time.

    1. I dont know how many i have. I usually wear a fee pairs throughout the week so theyre always in rotation except for the performance stuff which gets used and then set aside as there are more to review afterward.

      Ive reviewed a pair of proteges before, long ago, and they were decent. I will be doing what i can to expand the brand coverage but its an ongoing process.

  2. Is the cushion set-up here in M8 is same as the fly through cushion in the Air Jordan 2012? I’ve been observing the cushion set-up on the 3 Jordan brand player sigs and i think they’ve put them all in the Air Jordan 2012.

    1. They share the same concept of “choose your flight” but the Wade and CP3s have foam based cushions so they are pretty different.

  3. What up, Night? Just picked up the M8, Cool Greys for wifey. On sale for $80, it’s a no brainer. We were looking at the forefoot cushioning, and could not determine the shape. Is it the same as traditional forefoot zoom bags (ie: Air Penny II, AJ XIV)? Maybe I’ll just wait until she gets some wears in and look at the bottom of the sockliner for the impression. We were thinking, it must be larger than normal. It goes the full width of the foot (lateral to medial). Just by the length of the exposed side (lateral), to me, it’s gotta be larger than normal. What do you think?

    1. Its a full length zoom unit (side to side) but its a 10mm bag which is their largest volume zoom unit… Its pretty thick.

  4. the heel max bag looks like a typical one,nothing much like what we see in lebron shoes?any different between these two type?one is bigger,one is smaller.does the smaller one feel hard a bit?

    1. They are the usual air bags. The 360 & 180 bags in the recent LeBrons are much higher in the heel and offer the greatest impact protection one can find on a shoe due to the larger volume of air inside.

  5. have you ever tried shox? i bought a 2nd hand VC4, outsole looks barely worn for basketball. i think it also has a 10mm zoom bag. would you be able to compare these to a zoom/shox combo? i havent got to try any new shox lately so i don’t know if the shox are worn out. they feel a bit stiff, i i dont feel any compression on the columns but they do sound like what was in the old shox commercials. Lol.

    1. compare to the M8 i mean. i also bought a 2nd hand bb2 at the flea markets too loved the cushioning but i think the midfoot was pretty unstable.

    2. Personally, i dislike SHOX… They are way too firm for me since im not heavy enough to really utilize the compression pillars. The latest SHOX that were placed on a Fuse hoops shoe, cant remember the name right now… Think they were the Hyperballer… Have a new Air max SHOX system but i havent tried those out.

      1. so they would feel firm at the heel if the player is on light players but larger players may feel the compresion due to more force they exert on landings?

  6. hmm these or cp3? which one do you think is better fit for me? I’m 6’2 160 btw. and which one do you prefer to play in?

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