Facts

Top

High-Top

Basketball sneakers that rise well above the ankle to keep sprints and jumps stable and well-supported. You sure can fly high when you have high-top basketball shoes to tie.

Mid-Top

Basketball sneakers that rise just up to where the ankles are. Providing support and flexibility so fine, mid-top basketball shoes surely hold the line.

Low-Top

Basketball shoes that leave the ankles exposed for a better range of motion. Be flexible with your blows, get basketball shoes that are low.

Signature

Good to know

Some basketball shoes embody the athleticism and symbolize the life of certain on-court legends. Hooping will surely be fine when you get kicks from their signature lines.

Lockdown
Lace-Up, Slip-On

Strap

Hoop shoes that drop the traditional laces in favor of velcro straps for better efficiency. Secure strap basketball shoes, and have them in various hues.

Lace-Up

Basketball shoes that stick with the good old laces for that familiar security and lockdown. Get lace-up basketball shoes to tie because they never go out of style.

Slip-On

Basketball shoes with uppers that provide a glove-like fit without the help of any lockdown mechanism. Do nothing but go in with slip-on basketball shoes .

Good to know

Some basketball shoes combine the powers of more than one lockdown styles for an improved fit and a much more stable ride. Get more bases covered with these basketball shoes.

Price
$150
Weight
11.3oz

Good to know

Basketball shoes usually weigh between 300g and 400g for speed and agility. Write your on-court tale with basketball shoes that barely tip the scales.

Road

Shoes best for road, track and light gravel. See the best road shoes.

Trail

Shoes best for trail, off road, mountains and other unstable surfaces. See the best trail shoes.

Good to know

As long as you stick to the road or path, and if you want just one running shoe, buy a road running shoe.

Neutral / cushion / high arch

Shoes for runners who does not need any additional arch support (Around 50% of runners). Best for people with high or medium high arches. See the best neutral shoes.

Stability / overpronation / normal arch

Shoes for runners who needs arch support (Around 45% of runners). Best for runners with a normal arch. See the best stability shoes.

Motion control / severe overproanation / flat feet

Shoes for runners who needs a lot of arch support. Best for runners with flat feet. See the best motion control shoes.

Good to know

- Rule of thumb: If in doubt, buy neutral shoes to avoid injuries.
- More about arch support in this video.
- Find your arch type by following steps from this video.

Daily running

Cushioned shoes for your daily easy running. Great comfort. See best shoes for daily running.

Competition

Lightweight shoes good for races, interval training, tempo runs and fartlek. Here are the best competition running shoes.

Good to know

If you want just one pair of shoes, buy a shoe for daily running.

The height difference from the heel to the forefoot, also known as heel drop, toe spring, heel to toe spring or simply drop.

There are many opinions about what a good heel drop is. We do not recommend any in particular. Lean more in this video.

Summary

We spent 7.7 hours reading reviews from experts and users. In summary, this is what basketball players think:

9 reasons to buy

  • Most users advise new buyers to purchase the Nike KD 9 Elite as it is a premium and a better version of the previous release, but it’s still sold at the same price.
  • Plenty of buyers say they enjoy the colorways of the shoe model because they correspond so well to their personal styles.
  • A lot of shoe owners appreciate the no-crease Flyknit technology on the upper of the Nike KD 9 Elite.
  • Many wearers recommend this shoe for shooting guards because of how flexible and lightweight it is.
  • Numerous owners value the sophistication of the Flywire and how it is set up.
  • The rubber outsole with visible compressed Zoom Air technology is hailed by a large number of purchasers as an important aesthetic highlight of the shoe.
  • Reviewers are happy with the low-to-the-ground feel of the Nike KD 9 Elite.
  • A good number of testers mention that they do not experience side-to-side movements when they wear these Kevin Durant basketball shoes.
  • The holographic Swoosh of the KD 9 Elite attracts many buyers.

5 reasons not to buy

  • Although a sufficient number of reviewers mention that the shoe has nice traction, they don’t advise to use it on dusty courts because it may become slippery. It is also hard to clean.
  • Some shoe owners imply that the connector between the forefoot outsole and the full-length Zoom outsole can break and rupture the Zoom bag.
  • Most of the reviewers emphasize that the shoe model is for narrow-footed wearers only.
  • A few users complain about the itchiness of the material in the higher part of the upper.
  • Testers do not recommend these Nike basketball shoes for outdoor play. They claim that the outsole rubber easily wears out.

Bottom line

The Nike KD 9 Elite is considered a luxury item despite its regular price. If the shoe will be used for playing as a shooting or point guard, this is perfect. The flexibility, comfortability, and lockdown of the shoe is a total rave.

The Flyknit technology on the upper provides a high level of breathability and lightness to the forefoot. The Flywire lacing technology promises support and stability. Finally, an attractive compression sleeve hugging the ankles of this shoe makes it hard to let pass.


Rankings


Ratings

3.8 / 5 based on 55 ratings

5 star
56%
4 star
11%
3 star
7%
2 star
11%
1 star
15%

My Rating

Expert Reviews

Experts are basketball players, who post reviews at youtube, directly at RunRepeat or at their own websites. Each expert is categorized from level 1 to level 5 based on expertise. See stats on expert reviews and how we calculate scores here.

Are you an expert? Apply to contribute here.

83 / 100 based on 11 expert reviews

  • 80 / 100 by The Sole Brothers • Don Fontaine and Sammy Lee • Level 5 expert

    For $150, it’s a great shoe. But it’s a very specific shoe. This is not at the very top of my rotation. But it’s a great performer. Good impact protection.

  • 70 / 100 by Seth Fowler • Seth Fowler • Level 4 expert

    Overall, it is a solid sneaker, a solid basketball performer and it doesn’t look too bad.

  • 85 / 100 by Basketball Diagnostics • Daumantas Rimkus • Level 5 expert

    The Nike KD 9 ELITE is a great performing sneaker if you have a right type of foot.

  • 80 / 100 by LiveforBball • Julius Kralikas • Level 5 expert

    The only clear improvement that’s made from the regular version is the shoes are now much easier to put on. The back material lets you put it on without trouble, unlike the regular stiff foam-backed mesh back on the standard KD 9.

  • 85 / 100 by WearTesters • Jarron Ramos • Level 4 expert

    The traction, cushion and materials all bring out the best of Nike’s technology, and the KD 9 Elites best feature is that it’s a shoe that can provide high level performance for all players and play styles.

  • 90 / 100 by HoopJordan • Hoop Jordan • Level 3 expert

    Overall ,KD 9 Elite is worth to buy. Fit and support are two very important categories and while the KD 9 Elite doesn’t perform well , the rest of the shoe performs like a top tier on-court model.

  • 92 / 100 by Andrew LaBrecque • Andrew LaBrecque • Level 2 expert

    It kind of just depends on your personality if you're one of those people who has to have the newest things, you want the Elite Series, this is a good look for you, guys. The shoe looks dope.

  • 90 / 100 by Hoop And Life • Nelson Chan and Kevin La • Level 2 expert

    The KD 9 Elite doesn’t have anything significantly better or different compared to the regular KD 9 besides the aesthetics of the shoe. Performance wise, it is pretty much the same shoe.

  • 90 / 100 by LightsOutBalling • Miles Hemming • Level 1 expert

    Aesthetically, the KD 9 Elite looks beautiful especially this colorway (Racer Pink).

  • 90 / 100 by PRism Puertoricanism • PRism Puertoricanism • Level 1 expert

    I can definitely see myself keeping these.

  • 85 / 100 by Shawdowville • Tinmy2014 • Level 1 expert

    Overall, I just found the fit to be too specific and not versatile enough to cater to a wide range of foot shapes and sizes.

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Profile of Nike KD 9 Elite

Kevin Durant and Nike signed a ten-year deal to extend Durant’s expiring seven-year contract that is worth $60 million. The current deal is reportedly worth as much as $300 million, including a $50 million retirement package. Nike has always been Durant’s favorite shoe brand, and he had turned down larger offers from both Adidas and Under Armour.

Shoe designer Leo Chang’s friendship with Durant resulted in designs that are tailored to the player’s needs on and off court. After the Nike KD 9, the Nike KD 9 Elite is the second shoe model under Kevin Durant’s name to have the Flyknit technology on them. The current version also has the Flywire technology for added support, neoprene for the extended ankle sleeve, phylon for the midsole, and a tapered Zoom Air technology for the outsole.

Performance

Cushion. The responsiveness of the Nike KD 9 Elite comes from the phylon in the midsole. It has been considered by Nike as a go-to material for most of their shoe models. It is lightweight and low profile. It is made of ethylene vinyl acetate that is processed using the compression molding technique.

Just beneath the phylon is the full-length Zoom technology with a vertical division in the forefoot. Zoom allows for better transitions and mobility. As with phylon, the Zoom cushioning is light, and it promises a bouncy explosive feel. The compressed plastic of the Zoom technology contains synthetic fibers that bring the feet closer to the ground.

Traction. On the outsole, the Nike KD Elite 9 features a multidirectional honeycomb pattern that is said to be a top-tier performer when it comes to tractions. Its translucent, soft, and pliable rubber compound on the sole is not only visually appealing but also built to enhance grip on a variety of surfaces.

Fit

Length and Width. The Nike KD Elite 9 comes only in men’s sizes. The versions for men come in sizes 7.5 to 15. The design of the shoe is for wearers with narrow feet. According to wearers, it is not true to size both in terms of length and width. If the wearer’s foot is from quite narrow to normal width, going for half a size bigger will do.

Lockdown. The Flyknit technology on the upper of the KD Elite 9 fits like a glove from the toe to the midfoot. It is significantly soft, thin, and breathable. The lockdown system applied is the Flywire with 5 eyelets. Flywire is made of vectran or nylon, and it aims to minimize the weight of the shoe while maximizing support especially in the forefoot and heel. The laces are designed to wrap around the ankle to provide lockdown, resulting in a dynamic support and containment. To eliminate any possible slippage, the top wires are designed to be pulled to secure the ankle area of the player.

Material

This Kevin Durant signature shoe is a first with a three-quarter high silhouette and a Flyknit construction on the upper, and it provides an ample amount of support and flexibility. The extended ankle area is made of stretchable neoprene. Neoprene is made of artificial rubbers that deliver stability and flexibility, regardless of temperature changes. This material makes it easier for the foot to slip in and out of the shoe, giving the wearer a pliable and more free-flowing experience.

Style

The Nike KD 9 Elite comes in different colorways that range from light to dark hues. On both sides of the shoe is the prestigious Nike Swoosh. The shade of the logo differs depending on the colorway.

The Flyknit technology eliminates the possibility of creasing. The strong woven fabric on the upper screams flexibility, breathability, and comfort. The toe box has a soft texture and fabric holding to the foot. The shoe is a one-piece construction with a Flywire system. The laces come in different colors depending on the colorway.

The name of Kevin Durant is printed on a faux suede tag on the top of the tongue. The back area has a neoprene collar that is accented by the same suede, but this time featuring Durant’s jersey number 35. Below it is the Kevin Durant logo in neon green. On the heel counter is Kevin Durant’s engraved signature. Lastly, the insole is neon green with Kevin Durant’s signature in bright orange.

Special Colorways of the Nike KD 9 Elite

The Nike KD 9 Elite was released in these colorways:

  • Hyper Orange. The KD 9 Elite in the Hyper Orange colorway comes with a white midsole, orange Flywire cables, and an orange Zoom cushion. It also has a black rear panel and an Oreo-like forefoot.
  • Elite Ivory. One of the few colorways to have a gum rubber outsole, these elite Kevin Durant basketball shoes come with an ivory, pale grey, and sail upper.
  • Elite Multicolor. The forefoot of this Nike KD 9 Elite is bathed in rainbow colors. This multicolor shoe comes with a black rear panel and a volt Zoom cushioning.
  • Elite Racer Pink. The Racer Pink colorway of the elite version of the KD 9 has a predominantly pink upper, white midsole, and multicolored forefoot.

Aside from these releases, the Nike KD 9 Elite also comes in special storied colorways. Some are discussed in the subsection below.

Nike KD 9 Elite Aunt Pearl

Kevin Durant is so dedicated to his Aunt Pearl that every shoe that he has is released in a special colorway that references her.  Also known as the Pink Dust, the Aunt Pearl colorway of the KD 9 Elite has a light pink upper with dust accents on the shoelace, Swoosh logo, and Zoom cushion.

Nike KD 9 Elite Flip the Switch

The colorway is inspired by Kevin Durant’s triumph against his injuries, which failed to deter him from reaching his goals. The Flip the Switch colorway has a mostly black upper with an Oreo-like forefoot. It has a gold Swoosh and other gold accents.

Nike KD 9 Elite Golden State Warriors PE

Of course, the Kevin Durant shoe collection will not be complete without a player exclusive for his beloved team. This two-tone shoe is majorly blue with golden yellow accents on the Swoosh, KD logo, Zoom cushion, and forefoot.

Nike KD 9 Elite Time to Shine

Worn by Nike-sponsored schools in the NCAA tournament, the Time to Shine colorway comes with a dark grey Flyknit upper and a red Zoom cushion.