Nike Kyrie 2
The Nike Kyrie 2 is excellent in every aspect, except the cushion. However, if you prefer the ultimate court feel, you’ve found the one.
Release Date: 2015
Athlete: Kyrie Irving
We’re back for another one with the performance review on the Nike Kyrie 2. Hope everyone enjoys the Holidays and stay tuned for my upcoming Top Performance Picks for 2015!
BEASTLY. Yeah, simple as that. Traction of the Nike Kyrie 2 is: Just. F***ing. Amazing. You want to go right? No problem. Wait, now you need to go left? No worries. Stop everything. Think for a second… no time for thinking, just react. Yeah. These bad boys got you covered.
Outdoors? I wouldn’t expect them to last too long on the blacktop, but they’ll work while they do. Exactly how long will they last outdoors? Wait right there while I go grab my timetable for how long every shoe lasts outdoors…
There is none. Plain and simple. The Nike Kyrie 2’s main focus was court feel, speed, and change of direction. In that sense, nailed it. But if you want or need cushion then stay away. Far away. There is a Zoom Air unit placed in the heel for impact protection, but Guards tend to stay on their toes – hence the rounded midsole/outsole setup. The forefoot isn’t completely bare as there is a section of Poron attached to the strobel board, but that’s mostly for step-in comfort and very minor cushion. I will say that while the shoe lack cushion, that it’s not always a bad thing. Those that prefer the feeling of the court underfoot will really enjoy the setup and this will help them feel light on their toes. However, if you must have the Nike Kyrie 2 and need cushion then I’d suggest grabbing an after-market insole. Afterwards, you should be perfectly fine.
Hyperfuse materials with textile mesh glued really glued onto it. Yeah, I loath this setup. It breaks in rather quickly and feels perfectly fine, but it’s like a tease for someone such as myself that really enjoys mesh, woven, and knitted uppers. The KD 7 for example. Loved it. Kyrie 1… not so much. These? Basically the Kyrie 1, but with a really cool rear setup – being softer mesh-like material – and a strap. It’s durable, supportive, and offers plenty of containment. Great for someone with Kyrie’s game. I just like something a little softer.
They fit true to size, and nowhere near as narrow as the Kyrie 1. Wide footers will still want to try them on to be sure, but just know that the setup isn’t suffocating like it was in the previous model. Lockdown is something that was much improved. The Kyrie 1 didn’t have many issues, but the midfoot and heel area always seemed to need some sort of lace adjustment whenever I’d wear them. It’s like you had to adjust to the shoe with each wear. These don’t offer the same problem. Actually, there isn’t a problem at all. You put them on. Lace them up. Strap yourself in and enjoy the ride.
The rounded midsole/outsole is the main thing that I was worried about…and I worried for nothing. Initially I thought it was going to cause some instability but that wasn’t the case. The base of the shoe is still pretty wide so stability, while it starts off feeling a bit wobbly, is pretty solid. The more force or pressure applied helps flatten the entire setup – much like a tire with the weight of the vehicle and passengers. Once in motion you’re pretty much good to go. Heel support, fit, and containment, as stated earlier, are really solid. So that’s something you won’t have to worry much about.
Nike Kyrie 2 Overall
I enjoyed them overall. There were parts that I really enjoyed, while other parts I thought could have been better. Traction, fit, and lockdown were all superb. I’ll even go out on a limb and say that I enjoyed the traction to that Hall of Fame level. Cushion is their weakest aspect and something an insole could easily fix. But, like I said before, some may just really want court feel. If that’s you then you’ll probably fall in love with these. Materials are not my personal preference, but I acknowledge that it works so I can’t really say anything negative about it from a performance perspective. They just don’t fit within my personal preference. If you enjoyed the Kyrie 1 then you’ll likely really enjoy the Nike Kyrie 2. The one thing I think we can all agree upon is that the price increased without the tech showing it. If I were to hope to see something improved…try and combine court feel with a bit of cushion. To me, that would make these a near perfect Guard shoe.