Our verdict

The Nike KD 14 is one of the best new options for anyone that wants a “mid” basketball shoe with ankle support, good lockdown, and good traction. The KD 14 is definitely a hoop-only shoe for m, it doesn’t really feel comfy enough to walk around in all day. I would expect you to hoop in these and take them off when you’re done.


  • True to size
  • Great cushion and feel
  • Great ankle support
  • Strap makes feet feel locked down
  • Looks really cool
  • No heel slip


  • Stiff out of the box
  • Needs wiping off for traction
  • Runs hot

Audience verdict


Who should but it

I recommend the Nike KD 14 to players who are looking for a nice-looking indoor basketball shoe that offers great cushion and ankle support.

Who should NOT buy it

Look away if you are a basketball player who:

  • want a shoe that can be used in both indoor and outdoor courts (in this case, the Nike Cosmic Unity is worth checking out
  • is looking for a basketball shoe with superb grip (the Lebron 18 is praised for its impressive traction)

Nike KD 14 first impression

Out of the box, the Nike KD 14 has a distinguished look and obvious enhancements that make this basketball shoe worth paying attention to. Once you put it on the immediate feeling you experience is the cushioning as it feels really good.  It looks good and feels good.

The KD 14 feels like it looks, good!

KD 14s’ are true to size.  It is somewhat wide, which is nice, and also is a little tighter around the forefoot area which I like.


It offers a noticeable cushion (if that’s what you’re looking for)

The shoe itself was stiff at first and after playing it did break in nicely.  The KD 14 did not give me any hotspots or burn from lacing on the top of my feet. The strap that velcros across the top is a nice enhancement to keep a nice snug feel as well.

The KD 14 gives you the freedom to move freely

Some basketball shoes actually make you feel less agile or like you are limited to what you can pull off in a game or when working on skills. The Nike KD 14 didn’t hold me back at all and I performed freely without hesitation to really push the tempo.

Nike KD 14 has a normal break-in period

The Nike KD 14 was stiff the first day but after that, it was very pleasant to play in.  So this isn’t a shoe I would wear for the first time on game day.  However, they reacted to me wearing them the way you would expect for a new pair with no complaints whatsoever.  These felt good enough to go on the 2nd day I wore them.


No excessive signs of wear

After playing in the KD 14 for a couple of weeks, there haven’t been any excessive signs of wear. Laces and loopholes are intact and the sole, tongue, and other components are in good shape, especially around the toe of the upper.

Traction gets better

All of the games and workouts are on hardwood floors. After playing for a couple of days, like normal, it collected some dust so these will require some wiping after a while.  The traction on this shoe actually got better the longer I played with it.


Hotter to play over a period of time

KD 14 has a thicker upper and was noticeably hotter to play in over a period of time. My feet/socks did sweat on occasion playing in these.


Great lockdown with no heel slip

KD 14 with the addition of the strap, you don’t really have to tie these real tight to experience good lockdown.  The KD 14 seems like it has extra lace holes as well if you want to use them.  After playing in these there was no heel slip and the lockdown was very good.

Nike KD 14 vs Nike KD 13

What got better

  • Cushioning
  • Added strap
  • Traction


What got worse

  • Weight
  • Breathability
  • Break-in period



Since both shoes have relatively the same traction and lockdown, there are two clear distinctions between the two pairs. 

If you want a lighter and more breathable shoe, I would recommend the Nike KD 13. The KD 13 does not have the velcro strap across the top either, which is a feature that you begin to appreciate.  

If you enjoy having more cushion, especially for jumpers/leapers, I would recommend the Nike KD 14. The KD 14 traction also performed better over time on wood floors; stop and go was elusive. 

Both are solid choices for any level of basketball activity.  Lately, most of my workouts have been in the KD 13, and in games I favor the KD 14.