|State of the art lightweight basketball shoes have been a mainstay at Nike for years now. From the Air Flight Lite to the Zoom Flight 2k3 to last season?s juggernaut, the Hyperdunk, Nike continues to push the envelope proving that when it comes to shoes, performance comes first. The cosmic success of the Hyperdunk would be hard to follow up, but Nike stepped up showing that creating a lightweight basketball shoe was no heavy task. Rather than start from scratch, the Nike Hyperize does an amazing job of carrying over the Hyperdunk?s best features while improving on its weaknesses.
The Hyperize draws familiar cues from the Hyperdunk carrying over Flywire Technology and Lunar Lite foam. The silhouette is more or less maintained after the success of the Hyperdunk and Huarache line shoes. Other similarities include Zoom Air in the heel as well as a glass fibre, midfoot stability shank plate. The biggest changes were the use of less Flywire threads, herringbone traction, ?and a wider toe box. Could the Hyperize outstep it?s big brother the Hyperdunk on the court??Click here to find out.
Strengths: The Nike Hyperize is an incredibly light and comfortable shoe. The mesh tongue/bootie makes for a very comfortable ride and requires little breaking in. ?While one would have a very hard time noticing a difference unless carefully inspecting, the tongue is thinner and more breathable than that of the Hyperdunk. ?While the Flywire upper feels awkward and rigid upon the first steps shooting around, once in game it proves light, strong, and supportive. ? A major improvement to the way the Flywire performed was that when the foot would flex, the Flywire panel had more points to flex as well making the shoe less restrictive in sprints. ?The Hyperize?s traction tested remarkably well on both hardwood and blacktop surfaces with no signs of slipping. ?The herringbone traction was in my opinion one of the most important changes between the Hyperdunk and Hyperize. ?A cushioning tandem of heel Zoom Air and forefoot Lunar Lite foam needed no breaking in and caused no blistering or sore feet. ?The Hyperize, like the Hyperdunk, comes in a handful of amazing color make-ups making for a sneaker that can broke both necks and ankles with no feelings of fragility or signs of cosmetic damage.
Weaknesses: While there is little room to criticize the Hyperize, it is not perfect – actually, there is no such thing as a perfect shoe. The widened toe box makes for a very roomy fit and could present some serious sizing issues. While I generally wear a size 11 for casual shoes, I always wear a 10.5 for hooping for a snug, sock-like fit. The Hyperize runs noticeably big and is the only basketball shoe I have ever worn two pairs of socks at once to play with. For most guards looking for a performance shoe the toe box fit is key because it is so critical to the ever important first step. Because of the roomy toe box it is hard to get a secure lockdown and more pressure is put on the heels instead of placing the player?s weight on the balls of their foot. The use of Lunar Lite foam in the forefoot make the shoe ultra-light and provide great court feel, but it is not as comfortable or responsive as Zoom Air.
Summary: In closing, the Hyperdunk left big shoes to fill because of its game changing design and even more, a genius viral marketing campaign, Olympic endorsement, and revolutionary performance. While time does not allow the Hyperize to capitalize on the Olympic glory synonymously attached to the Hyperdunk, the shoe is still amazing visually and tested great on court. The shoe’s only true weakness was the sizing issue and lockdown issues that stemmed from it. The jury is still out on the longevity of Lunar Lite foam, but it is undoubtedly light and provides great court feel. With that said, the Hyperize is an amazing shoe and ranks among the best shoes I have ever played in. Clearly the Hyperize is the future of Nike basketball and an improvement on an instant classic. ?This shoe is a must have for the upcoming season of basketball and a great shoe for back to school.