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Nike GT Jump 2: Elite Performance With Max Cushioning

Nike GT Jump 2 English Review

Nike GT Jump Spanish Review

Nike GT Jump 2

The first Nike GT Jump was a great hoop shoe with one of the most insane cushioning setups ever. The GT Jump 2 also has an amazing cushion setup but has some key improvements.

Colorway: Black white red

Release Date: 2023

Price: $180

Total Score

The Nike GT Jump 2 follows up the original Nike GT Jump which was a great basketball shoe, one of the most comfortable models on the market, and featured one of the most amazing cushioning setups we have ever seen. The shoe was good enough to be Nikola Jokic’s go-to shoe last season, so there is that.

Now, the GT Jump wasn’t a perfect shoe, and because of the max cushion setup, it was definitely “not for everyone”. But, Nike has actually made some key improvements on the Nike GT Jump 2 to try and eliminate some of the shoe’s weaknesses and make it more approachable for more types of players. So let’s dive into the review and see how these will perform in court. In this article, we will also include the testing results of WearTester’s own Bryan Hinkle, aka Duke4005.

Nike GT Jump 2 Review

Nike GT Jump 2 Tech Specs:

Nike GT Jump 2 Traction

The Nike GT Jump 2, in this colorway at least, comes with a translucent rubber outsole with a data-driven traction pattern. Nike doesn’t have the best track record with this type of rubber or traction pattern, but we are glad to say that this setup will work well indoors and keep this shoe as agile as possible on court.

Unfortunately, this won’t be a good option for outdoor play, however. We might get some colorways that feature a tougher solid rubber outsole which would be better suited for the black top, but that’s something still to come. 

Duke4005: Herring-wave-lines-diamonds. Sounds extremely confusing and looking at the pattern, well, there is no pattern. The toe has herringbone across and then under the ball of the foot (where the Zoom bags are) transitions to broken lines and angular shapes which then transition into waves in the midfoot and heel. The only consistent thing is it FREAKING WORKS. I wore these for a total of six sessions (six days, at least 3 games of full court each day) and I think I wiped twice in total.

The lines are spread wide so dust doesn’t really gather anywhere and even the translucent outsole grips great. Being a “big man” shoe means sometimes the traction is not for quick cuts or transition, but I had no issues getting out and running or playing defense.

Outdoors? Actually, you may be good as far as the hardness of the rubber but the pattern is fairly shallow so I can see it wearing through pretty quickly.

Nike GT Jump 2 Cushion

nike gt jump 2 cushion

The cushion on the Nike GT Jump 2 is insane, as it was on the previous model, but there have been changes to add stability to the setup. What we have is a Phylon midsole that encapsulates a full-length Zoom Strobel, that sits atop a giant React column in the heel and two max volume Zoom Air units in the forefoot, making the GT Jump 2 one of the most highly cushioned models ever.

The React in the heel substitutes a large Zoom Air bag of the first GT Jump, and the Phylon takes the place of Cushlon. These changes subtract some bounce but add a good amount of stability, which is a fair trade, as this will still probably be the most plush cushioned basketball shoe on the market in 2023.

Duke4005: Let’s be honest – this is what we all came for, right? How much bounce can a shoe like this really have, and is it stable enough for anyone to wear? Well, a TON, and yes.

To start with, in case you haven’t seen it, the forefoot has two HUGE separate Zoom bags. These bags cover across the width of the shoe (and even a little farther) and are super springy, bouncy, trampoline-like – it’s an experience. The heel has a HUGE slab of React foam, and not the old basketball type – this is the React from Nike running shoes, and it’s soft and cushy.

Then, to top it off, we get a full-length Zoom Strobel. How much is too much? I’m not saying this is, but it’s damn close. Oh, and then (and THEEEEEEN), the Jump Plate runs the full length of the shoe, compressing the midsole Zoom and React and springing it back (that’s the black part in the midsole). All of this works to make the Jump 2 a literal trampoline for your feet.

With all of that cushioning, won’t court feel be affected? Yeah, you know it, but as I get older I want to feel the court less and less. The court is hard, not fun. I want some padding. I will say it took me about three games to get used to the feeling, of having a shoe actually spring under your feet while planting to jump, and my timing was OFF, so much that I wanted to return them. Given a couple of more games though and my knees and back are pain-free and the feeling underfoot is crazy.

Transition-wise, the React into Zoom feels strange at first, if you are a heel striker, because you’re going from soft heel to springy toe, but changing directions on drives/crossovers or staying in front of your man on defense never felt slower or unstable.

Nike GT Jump 2 Materials

Here we see another well-thought-out upgrade. The upper is built almost 100% with engineered mesh which offers a better fit than the materials on the GT Jump 1. This material is lightweight and breathable and requires little to no break-in time, but at the same time is robust enough to offer excellent containment.

Duke4005: One of the biggest improvements for me is the new materials. While the Jump 1 used a rougher lenoweave and synthetic toe, the Jump 2 uses a more textile-feeling weave and open toe. The overall feel in the upper is softer and while it doesn’t stretch, it does flex better from the start. As the shoe goes into the midfoot the weave is backed by a stronger, more plastic material, and by the time it gets to the heel, it is full-blown solid. The tongue is a 3/4 bootie and super breathable and also includes one of the coolest details on the shoe – the tongue logo.

It has a huge hole for a pull loop with the fabric Swoosh strip in the middle and maybe it’s old-school me but I think it’s super cool. The other is the ankle Air bubbles. They serve absolutely minimal purpose, if anything, but dang they look cool.”

Nike GT Jump 2 Support

If the original GT Jump had one issue, it was stability. It wasn’t an unstable shoe by any means, but it was an aspect that could be improved. And Nike did. The main upgrade is the full-length TPU plate that acts as both a torsional shank plate and a spring plate and seriously boosts the stability and reactiveness of the shoe on court.

That TPU plate also wraps around the two exposed Zoom units in the forefoot which both ad stability and shield the units. In the forefoot of the shoe, we have two lace cables, one on each side, for improved lockdown as well.

Duke4005: While this may seem like a strange image for support and stability, it makes the shoe wearable for me. First, it shows the jump plate running through the forefoot, dropping the midfoot bend to almost nothing and tying the forefoot to the heel. Second, it shows how the plate cages the Zoom bags to keep the Zoom from crushing and rolling, leading to ankle instability. Third, it shows how far the bags and plate stick out from the midsole, giving you a wider base for takeoffs and landings.

Shooters know – if your feet don’t feel stable on takeoffs you won’t square up, and if you aren’t comfortable on landings you worry more about injury than the shot. I had no worries at all in the six days of testing, which is strange with a shoe that rides this high.

The second part of the shoe is the heel, and even though the React is soft, it has a slight cage running up from the outsole on both sides of the foot, and the jump plate wrapping around it from top to bottom. All of this structure, again, leads to a fairly stable ride underfoot, even given the softer foam and higher ride.

The lacing system completely locks in your foot from front to back and a super-solid heel counter keeps that foot upright and ready. The heel counter actually runs almost to the midfoot but never makes the shoe feel overly stiff and supportive.

Nike GT Jump 2 Fit

The Nike GT Jump 2 fits true to size and, thanks to the upgraded build of the upper, they offer a very nice 1 to 1 fit which is exactly what you want in terms of on-court performance.

Duke4005: Very true to size, thanks to the upper materials and construction. I like a little wiggle room and at true to size, my toe is about a quarter inch from the end of the shoe, but the lockdown is so good my foot never moves laterally or front to back inside the shoe (I freaking HATE my foot moving in the shoe). There are support straps in the forefoot that tie into the midsole for locking down the forefoot.

There is also a lace loop in the collar that laces into the heel and pulls the foot back into the heel and the shoe wraps across the ankle area, meaning no heel slip and again, NO MOVEMENT. I did get some chafing around the ankle collar due to the way the top line angles in, but it took a couple of hours of playing for me to feel it. Widefooters, go up half and you should be good.

Nike GT Jump 2 Overall

It’s nice to see the changes Nike made in this shoe. They have taken everything that was great in the first model and tweaked it to make the GT Jump 2 that much better as a performance basketball shoe. It also makes the Nike GT Jump 2 a more accessible model for the majority of basketball players out there that needed the added reactiveness and stability.

The Nike GT Jump is a great hoop shoe, but it’s definitely better suited for larger, heavier players, and the GT Jump 2 feels like a more well-balanced shoe, that a wider audience will enjoy.

Duke4005: To be honest, this was a shoe I was NOT trying to review, based on last year’s model. I loved the bounce and craziness of the Zoom in the GT Jump but it wasn’t a comfortable shoe for me to play in. The heel-to-toe drop was massive and the higher and stiffer cut of the upper made it a hard shoe for me to move in. The GT Jump 2 fixed all of that, giving us a smaller drop, a wider plate (no midfoot squeeze), a lower cut, and a softer weave. This is one of those shoes you have to wear to appreciate because the experience is like nothing else from Nike or anyone else.

Great traction, great fit, GREAT cushioning, and materials that look good and don’t feel cheap make the Jump 2 a lot of shoe, and it is a LOT of shoe, so if you like lighter, faster shoes (Puma All Pro Nitro, New Balance Two Wxy V3, and the Curry 10 are some of my favorites) then keep looking. If you enjoy bounce, need help for those old or injured joints, or just like the latest technology package, grab the GT Jump 2.

Buy Nike GT Jump 2
  1. Is it better than the lebron 17 cushioning? I have the 17 and it’s really the best for my knees and 10+ in impact protection….lmk id love to try something new that can beat my love for the LB17s

    1. Yes, the cushion is better overall but the combo of cushioning in the GT Jump 2 will have a different feel from the LeBron 17.

    2. Damn that’s crazy I thought I was the only LB17 person left. Been hoopin in em since, have hella pairs. Just ordered these because no Brons have done it for me since the 17, and I need a new shoe to hoop in so I can stop rebuying old 17s! 

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