Verdict from 6 experts and 13 user reviews

6 reasons to buy

  • Almost all users of the Melo M12 agree that the basketball shoe feels very comfortable. A couple of reviewers add that they love the foam pods on the Achilles heel.
  • Even if the shoe uses “soft materials” for the upper, a lot of users notice that the Melo M12 still offers good overall support.
  • Most of the wearers say that the materials feel great and break in easily. One comments that “the mesh used is very breathable and comfortable and almost feels like a running shoe with support for basketball play.”
  • Several purchasers are happy with the M12’s different colorways, which are as vibrant and storied as the colorways of Russell Westbrook's second Why Not Zer0
  • After breaking in, the shoe actually has good traction, remarks some testers.
  • A lot of users notice that their foot doesn't move around inside the shoe.

3 reasons not to buy

  • The majority of wearers caution against using the Melo M12 outdoors, saying that the rubber on the outsole wears down very fast. Outdoors players should just skip this shoe.
  • Several users were not too pleased that the shoe has Zoom Air cushioning at the forefoot but not at the heel. They say that this setup makes the heel feel stiff.
  • One reviewer feels that the cushioning on the M12 is less responsive than the older models’.

Bottom line

Overall, expert reviewers love the shoe’s upper because it is comfortable, easy to break in, and very supportive. The FlightSpeed system also proves to be effective in providing forefoot cushioning. However, several wearers wish that the heel was also equipped with a Zoom Air unit.

Tip: see the best basketball shoes.

Good to know

Although called the Jordan Melo M12, the shoe is actually the fourteenth iteration of Carmelo Anthony’s signature line with the Jordan Brand. The shoe boasts a mesh, knit, and synthetic leather upper; FlightSpeed system in the midsole; and a distorted grid-like traction pattern on the outsole.

Cushion. The Melo M12 uses the FlightSpeed system for its cushioning. This basically means that a carbon plate rests on top of a Zoom Air unit. Upon landing, the plate distributes impact energy and adds a different kind of compression, unlocking and maximizing the Zoom Air unit’s potential.

Traction. The shoe utilizes a distorted grid pattern on its outsole. The pliable rubber works well on all surfaces, whether it be indoors or outdoors. There is a need to be extra careful though because the tread pattern burns easily on outdoor courts.

Length and Width. The shoe runs true to size. It is safe to go with your standard Jordan basketball shoe size.

Lockdown. Lockdown comes mostly from the webbed lacing system. Cords run from the midsole up to the lace loops; grasping the foot and pulling it into the foot bed. An internal TPU heel cup hugs the foot from the back. Along with the podular foam lining, this internal heel counter creates a comfortable and snug cradle for the foot.

The dual-wrap upper on the Melo M12 features mesh on one side and a knitted material on the other. There’s synthetic leather paneling at the back and fuse overlays on high-wear areas to ensure durability.

Foam pods and an internal TPU cup are found in the heel to keep the foot from slipping out.

As for the midsole, it has unlocked Zoom Air unit at the forefoot and plain foam at the heel. FlightSpeed and FlightPlate are also incorporated into the shoe’s midfoot. The midsole’s frame extends up to the lateral heel side; helping contain the foot during lateral movements.

The materials used in the upper add a dual texture to the shoe, while the synthetic paneling at the back gives it a touch of classic basketball feel. The shoe’s clean look is perfect, not only for on-court use but also for casual wear.

Since its debut in January 2016, five special colorways have been released: Yankees, Jade, The Dungeon, Red Gum, and Hyper Orange; with the last two being the most popular.

Jordan Melo M12 Red Gum

The shoe features a predominantly red upper with hits of gold detailing. It is paired with a gum-based outsole. The Jordan Melo M12 Red Gum is said to be a part of the Chinese New Year release, thus the colors.

Jordan Melo M12 Hyper Orange

The Jordan Melo M12 Hyper Orange was released shortly after the shoe’s general release date. The shoe sports a wolf grey and hyper orange color combination with metallic silver details.


How Jordan Melo M12 ranks compared to all other shoes
Top 42% basketball shoes
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Top 34% Jordan basketball shoes
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Top 50% carmelo anthony basketball shoes
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The current trend of Jordan Melo M12.
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Dimitrije Curcic
Dimitrije Curcic

Dimitrije Curcic has been playing basketball for over 22 years. Like Manu Ginobili, he’s a left-hander whose moves led him to a better career-shooting percentage than the Argentine himself. After playing professionally for 10 years, Dimitrije moved to coaching for two seasons before he became a basketball statistician for StatScore, and FanSided contributor for the San Antonio Spurs. Dimitrije loves to tell hoop stories through numbers and graphics and has been featured on Fansided, FiveThirtyEight, Eurohoops, and TalkBasket among the others.