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Nike Zoom Ascention Performance Review

Wondering how the Nike Zoom Ascention played on court? To be honest they’re definitely a budget model and lighter players would probably play better in them. For a more detailed look on the Nike Zoom Ascention check out the performance review below.


Zoom Ascention - Traction

With a solid rubber outsole and full-length flat herringbone, any expectation of the traction being terrible is an uneducated guess at this points as any shoe with herringbone and decent rubber will stick to the floor. The downside of the Nike Zoom Ascention is that you have to break in the traction in order to get reliable traction, which shouldn’t take too long. Playing on dusty floors will definitely hold this shoe back from performing at its potential, as the rubber attracts dust, but keeping up with your wipes will remedy that problem. The rubber is quite thick as well so durability shouldn’t be much of an issue and should play well outdoors. For a $90 investment the traction is more than adequate.


Zoom Ascention - Cushion

The cushioning in the Nike Zoom Ascentio isn’t anything new from Nike. Like the name states there is Zoom in the forefoot as well as a Phylon midsole that runs full length. This set up is pretty basic and if you’re an avid Nike Basketball customer then you know what this set up feels like. At first you have to break in the Phylon to feel the Zoom in the forefoot. After some time the Zoom starts to feel a bit more springy and responsive. I enjoyed the set up. I was able to make quick cuts, hard plants, jump, sprint, and land all while having pretty good court feel with this cushion set up. It isn’t anything special but it gets the job done.


Zoom Asention - Materials

The Nike Zoom Ascention is mostly a mesh upper with high-tensile stitching on the medial and lateral parts of the upper. There is also foam padding on the heel that functions as an internal heel counter. The materials don’t feel super premium and the mesh feels kind sketchy to be playing in to be honest. This shoe’s materials are quite reminiscent of the OG HyperRev from 2014. If you have had a pair of those then you would understand, although the high-tensile stitching of the Nike Zoom Ascention reminds me of the OG flywire we got on the OG Hyperdunks from 2008. The main issue of the materials is durability. For the time being my pair is still holding up even after being stepped on plenty of times and making really hard lateral cuts in them, but these could be subject to ripping and tears.


Zoom Ascention - Fit

The fit works but it’s sloppy. The Nike Zoom Ascention runs a little long and is kind of narrow (even though I have narrow feet). The fit from the toe to about midfoot is pretty good and locked down well due to the fact that the shoe features a half-bootie construction. Also, the basic lacing system keeps that area solid. Once you get to the heel are that where things get interesting. The area where the mesh upper meets the foam rear feels like a dysfunctional relationship and it isn’t pleasent even after break in time. I just couldn’t get a consistent fit every time I played in the Ascention. There are two extra eyelets to aid with the fit but even then I was still unsure of the heel area. It could be that I have skinnier feet and ankles but I found myself re-lacing the shoe from time to time just to get a better fit. There were times when the shoes fit great and others when I wasn’t feeling it and that’s not a good look.


Zoom Ascention - Support

The mesh upper features high-tensile stitching to help aid the mesh in the support area. Like I stated earlier in the fit section I felt locked down in the midfoot to the toe area because of the half-bootie construction. The heel portion of the shoe features an internal heel cup and a little bit of padding on the inside of the shoe while the Phylon midsole support peaks near the heel add a little more lateral support, but that only did so much to keep my heel secure. I experienced some movement in the heel and support felt compromised after that. A little outrigger on the outsole of the shoe helps prevent rollover and creates lateral stability when playing and that does its job too. You can only get so much support out of a shoe that’s made out of mesh. To think that a couple years back using mesh uppers on basketball shoes would blasphemy but now it’s the norm and getting a budget-friendly model is a luxury for sure.

Nike Zoom Ascention Overall

Zoom Ascention - Overall

The Nike Zoom Ascention is a decent budget model. For $90 you get durable traction, a basic Zoom and Phylon cushion set up, and a mesh upper supplemented with high-tensile stitching. It’s not going to knock your socks off but it’ll get the job done, especially if all you need is a shoe to ball out in. This shoe jumps in and out of my rotation just because of how it meets my basic needs – if I can dunk in a shoe then I know I can rely on it. If you’re someone who plays casually or just needs a decent shoe to beat up then this shoe is a nice addition. However, if you’re looking for something a bit more substantial then you can pass on these. If you want to try these out for yourself you can find these here but I would suggest looking around the Internet, retail, and outlet stores as these could hit sales racks (for less than $90) just like most Nike team models.

Zoom Ascention - Score Card
  1. I was hoping that these could be a decent/comfortable outdoor option but nah. Thanks for the review and the insight.

  2. Honestly, I could be wrong, but it seemed like you really wanted to say ‘These aren’t worth $90,’ which is exactly what you should have just flat out said… and if you didn’t want to say that shame on you hahaha

    There are soooo many better shoes on sale right now, and also better budget friendly models from both UA and Adidas (plus the Kobe Mentality) that even fathoming to buy these at fall price might be insanity.

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