Nike’s latest Fuse based performance model, the Nike Zoom Hyperenforcer, has landed at retailers so lets break down the latest rendition with a first impression.
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Traction – Full length herringbone pattern has made its way onto the outsole after many complaints on the traction-less outriggers of the past. The grooves are thick (not as thick as the Hyperfuse) and widely dispersed, this would make for a great outdoor performance sneaker.
The heel has an oval shaped area with little rubber bumps that are very flexible and shaped inward into the heel. I’m not sure what this is for exactly as Guards don’t typically use this area but if you prefer forefoot cushion in a lightweight package while being a Small or Power Forward, this could be a useful tool in post maneuvers.
Cushion – Same exact midsole and setup as the original Hyperfuse & Hyperfuse 2011. Forefoot Zoom Air is placed under the forefoot which feels just as you would expect.
The rest of the midsole I thought would be Cushlon but its been stated that its just your ordinary Phylon.
The insole is also the same as the previous two Hyperfuse models… just a thin foam insole that’s pretty basic.
Material – Flywire & Hyperfuse are combined on a model that retails at $110.00… not bad in my opinion.
The Fuse upper is nearly the same as it was on the previous Hyperfuse models, nowhere near as flexible as whats used on the Fly Wade 2 & KD IV. It’s not a big deal as it is fairly flexible yet durable so it will retain its shape well.
The eyelets feature a typical Flywire setup, wrapping around the eyelet and running down the structure columns for a secure fit.
Fit – These run small, big surprise, so I ended up going ½ size up. There are two sections at the base of the midfoot with small notches cut into the material for additional flexibility.
The heel is built much better than the original Hyperfuse with decent padding in the collar along with sculpted heel padding to help keep your heel locked into in place.
Ventilation – This was disappointing… while the tongue has perforations, the mesh side panels are lined on the interior with fabric which is something I still find baffling even though I’ve been seeing it more often. Not even a glimmer of light was able to shine through the fabric lined interior which will hinder the shoes overall ventilation no matter how it seems on the exterior.
Support – This is the area of the shoe I was most impressed with. The lateral side has additional panels in place which feel like they house a thin TPU frame in between the fused materials which adds rigidity.
The medial side also has this in place but its shape is a bit different. Where the additional material rounds out towards the arch of the foot is placed right where the back end of your arch sits and you can feel it pressing against your foot. I think the two TPU support frames should have been placed on the opposite sides with the rounded design being featured on the lateral side for some structure and support against roll overs while the medial should have had the more narrow frame for some support while promoting flexibility.
There is also an internal TPU heel counter as well.
I think these will play well overall but there are already things that I can see and feel upon try on that I would have done differently. That isn’t a bad thing but in my opinion the small mistakes that are present should have been corrected prior to being manufactured. Traction looks beast though which is something I am excited about.