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Nike Zoom KD IV (4) Performance Review

Nike KD 4 battle tested kevin durant 2

The KD IV has made some upgrades from last year’s KD III however, as I stated in my Performance Teaser… the aspects which I loved in the KD III never made its way onto the KD IV.

Hit the jump for full written review…

Buy Nike KD IV (4)

Traction – 9.5/10 (This score is based on usage of a clean hardwood court)
Cushion – 5/10 (Average)
Material – 9.5/10
Fit – 7.5/10
Ventilation – 8/10
Support – 8.5/10
Overall – 8/10

Traction – Traction in the KD III was superb no matter the surface. The KD IV however, you will need to remain either on a perfectly clean floor (awesome traction) or on a rough outdoor surface. Dusty courts you find a ton of slipping due to the rubber compound used on the outsole.

Cushion – The forefoot Zoom unit was not very noticeable as it has been in the previous 3 models. I assume this is due to the firm Phylon and dense rubber they have in place here. NikeiD will have options for a cushioned midsole as far as the Phylon is concerned which is something you may want to consider before making a purchase on one of the regular retail versions.

Material – Fuse based uppers are durable, retain their shape and allow air to flow throughout the sneaker. You won’t find a better value for you hard earned cash than with a Fuse based upper in my personal opinion.

Fit – This was the other aspect in which I thought the KD III was greater than the KD IV. There was some ‘pinching’ of sorts on the right shoe in the forefoot which did eventually go away after quite a few wears on-court. The Adaptive Fit strap was decent but nothing to get overly excited about. In the heel there is little padding which is not sculpted along with a soft and smooth lining… this worked fine with cotton socks yet with Dry-Fit socks there was some heel slip.

Ventilation – This area was better than most Fuse based models as there was nothing blocking or restricting the air flow for the mesh layers. There could have possibly been more of it but for what we were given its nothing to really complain about.

Support – Support was great, as you would expect. The external midfoot shank kept the foot in its natural shape without additional, and sometimes painful, flexing of the arch. Again, the Adaptive Fit strap did what it was meant to do but it did not make me jump for joy. Something I forgot to note in the video was the forefoot’s lateral outrigger which offers additional support and helps prevent pronation which could lead to rolling the ankle/ foot.

Overall – It’s a decent shoe and very durable. Mostly I would rate this as an average performer and nothing higher than that. For the increased price that we received, we really didn’t get anything in return other than an extremely durable material along the upper.

  1. I feel bad for KD, he is required to have the under $100 shoe in the signature line…Was this a step in the right direction with the KD line?

    1. Well theyre built around his specific needs, as are every signature, so i wouldnt feel bad… Its exactly what he wants.

    2. He’s NOT required. He wants to keep them under $100 to keep them affordable for families that don’t have the money for $200+ shoes. Since KD himself couldn’t afford some of his favorite kicks as a kid, he’s doing it as a gesture so that everyone can get them.

    3. KD was the one who requested nike for his shoes not to go over $100. they said he wanted them to be an afforadble signiture shoe/team option.

  2. I would imagine with the success his line is having, he will no longer have that $100 mark as a shoe. Nike will push his line to the $120-$130 mark next year. I have great expectations performance wise from the KD line which has taken over Kobes [terribly failed this year; if only the Elites can save them] for best basketball performance on a signature athlete.

    1. I agree with you 100% on the price increases. What started out as an affordable option for a signature performance shoe will no longer be applicable in the future. Without any true upgrades or enhancements, this is a turnoff for me.

      As for being the best signature sneaker from a performance standpoint… I disagree as Jordan Brand is highly underrated in the performance market in my personal opinion. After playing in both the Wade 2 & CP3.V i feel each of the two outperforms overall when compared to the KD line.

  3. Performance wise…it look likes its step down from KD 3…but with enough hype with the “limited” editions etc…this shoe seems pretty hot for “collectors”

    But thanks for an honest review again…made the decision easier to got with Kobe VI (on sale at most places) for my cousin’s b-day present vs KD 4….he actually uses his shoes to ball in as well wearing them out.

    1. Thanks, greatly appreciated!

      There are parts of each shoe i would take and combined which would make for an affordable shoe which would also perform exponentially well for its price point. Separate they both fall slightly short in some areas though… But that can be said about many sneakers.

    2. I was in somewhat a similar situation. I don’t have a big collection of ballin’ shoes. I strictly use them for performance & obviously for basketball. I probably just buy one per year or per 18 months. I was deciding on the KD IV or the Kobe VI and ended up returning the KDs for the Dark Knight Kobe VIs. I tried out the KD IVs and was pleased with its performance right out the box on a clean hardwood, but I felt after thorough research that the Kobe VIs were a much more proven & advanced performance tech shoe compared with Durant’s latest. Also, I was looking for a low to below-mid type of shoe. I have yet to try my first & new pair of Kobe VIs, but I look forward to a successful use with them.

      1. Damn, I thought CP3.V would be better, what’s the reason? Now a pass for me, cause I want an upgrade after my Kobe 6…

        1. Just bc the kobe is better doesnt mean i dont recommend the CP3s. Theyre slightly comparable but also very different in many ways. I just personally feel the kobe 6 was a great shoe.

      2. With exception to the KD 3 since I never bought or tried them before, that was my eventual ranking between those 3 shoes. I got the Kobe VI. Although… I still am very curious about the Cp3.V and am real tempted to buy them, after waiting for a more interesting colorway. Also, the KD IV all star Galaxy is enticing, besides its attractive look, I still can’t deny it’s performance and short term experience I had with it. I liked the feeling of the lock down the strap provided. I’ve worn and played in strapped shoes before, and am used to. I don’t see it as much as a gimmick as I do a function.

  4. pinching on the right shoe is really an issue i think. i experience the same thing at the same spot you are pointing at. around the front top where the mid sole and outsole meet. on my pair i noticed a pinch point above the midsole near the outtrigger. eventually it does go but it is still noticeable when you look at it closely, you just dont feel it anymore.

    1. It def needed tome to get used to which i wasn’t too fond of. Once it goes away it isnt that bad but it was not easy breaking them in at all.

  5. I like your reviews. I’ve learned a lot watching them and reading your posts. Most of your shoes/reviews lean toward smaller guard style players. Well I’m 6’5, weigh 250 and play in the paint all day. Play against taller and bigger guys.

    I’m turtle slow so I don’t care for speed. What shoes do you recommend for 4s and 5s or slower players? Number one priority is cushioning and comfort

    Also this may be a big generalization but am I right with this line of thinking –

    Lighter shoe = speed, quickness. Heavier shoe = comfort, cushioning.

    the 3 shoes I’m thinking about are the Melo 8, Air Max Hyperdunk 2011, and off your own review, the Air Jordan 2011 Q Flight.

    1. Thanks!

      You are partially correct with you assumption but you cant always label shoes that way…

      My recommendation would be to go with a Max air cushion if thats what you need, ultimate cushion, but you are also light enough in weight to where a more responsive cushion such as
      Zoom air would work for you. Instead of the q flight i would go for the a flight, a bit more to the upper which will aid you in post maneuvers plus they have full length air cushion which you will enjoy. They are also very light for a larger player shoe and can help you just a tad with your “turtle” speed lol.

  6. 1st off pointing out traction is key to figuring out a good basketball shoes witch is why i love checking out ur reviews.but back to the point and when u pointed out ur skepticism about story telling traction and i totally agree. im a KD35 fan and bought all his models. but since his story telling traction his shoes pretty much fell off. i play primarily outdoors ive noticed the kd3 traction only lasted maybe a few months and the 4’s are pretty much a bust to. but i noticed the 1’s and 2’s ive played months and months in and the traction on those two models still have all the traction left i don’t understand how nike can put out great traction shoes then try to fancy it all up to jus make it crap. they need not to try to fix what is not broken. which i feel they are always ruining something that really works SMH.

    1. I wish theyd just use what is known to work as well but so long as the floor is clean almost any pattern has the possibility of working well… The problem is that they dont seem to keep in mind that those who purchase the product arent able to play of pristine NBA floors.

  7. Really like the reviews, great stuff! Glad I found this prior to buying a new pair of shoes here. However, with that said it has now has made the decision that much more complicated when weighing the pros and cons. Basically for me I prioritize: 1. good traction and 2. heel cushion/comfort. Typically play on a school gym floor, however its always dusty (ruling out the kd’s…) and I play the 2. Any advice on what you select (in a mid-high top shoe) given this would be greatly appreciated! Keep up the good work, will be looking forward to more reviews.

    1. Thanks!

      So far the better traction surfaces for most court conditions have been the cp3.v and jordan 2012. Wade 2s have solid traction as well. Two of the three have foam cushions, which i like, but the 2012s have zoom or air cushion depending on the system you choose.

  8. are the KDIV’s better than the KD III’s? or is it a step back from the previous shoe?
    if compared to the hyperfuse 2011 , hyperdunk 2011 , lebron 9 , kobe 7 or fly wade 2’s how would they do ?

  9. As a guard, did you prefer this or the Hyperdunk 2011? Maybe some pros and cons of both?
    Thanks man!

  10. Is there a place that you can buy those all black with a little orange ones that KD wore in round 1 against the mavs?

  11. I have Kobe 7s and I like them should i get another pair or customize these with the cushioned midsole. Also do u know if the Away PE will hit stores.lus do these run small.

  12. i got these to use as indoor shoes as they were on sale and now use my crazy light lows for outdoor, i think crazy light lows are better and so do you. Cant use them indoor anymore though cause i have worn them out quite a bit by playing with them outside. Still seeming as i got these for $60 i am very satisfied for what i got. Great review aswell. Do you think at the end of the year you could do top 5 performance shoes and then top 5 upcoming shoes your most excited about

  13. Love the reviews, but one thing I’d like to see on a consistent basis in your reviews is info on sizing, as in, do they fit true to size, run big/small, width. Sometimes you touch on the subject, other times, not. Overall, love your reviews!

  14. The pinching issue is still present for me whenever i ball with my kd 4. I can feel it at the same exact spot you guys were referring to. But for me on both feet. These pair is totally stacked up in the shelves for good

  15. How durable would this be on outdoor surfaces exactly? as in would these last me more than a few months? I live in India and i cant afford to keep buying sneakers every month what shoe would you suggest that is under 150$ ?

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