Luka Doncic's first shoe is a well-received one. The Zoom Separate offers all that a typical player wants in a basketball shoe. However, the quality of the materials is a letdown, especially given that this sneaker hails from Jordan. Fortunately, this does not affect performance that much.
- Grippy on clean courts
- Outdoor-worthy outsole
- Forefoot impact protection
- Comfortable upper
- Solid forefoot support
- True to size
- No break-in needed
- Affordable Jordan shoe
- Dust-prone outsole
- Heel support issues
Who should buy the Jordan Zoom Separate
The Zoom Separate is clearly more suitable for players who dig it just like Luka Doncic. Specifically, these are players whose movements are more focused on the forefoot area.
Who should NOT buy this basketball shoe from Jordan
Luka Doncic's Jordan Zoom Separate won't be too helpful for the following players:
- Heel strikers, because the rear part of the shoe is not as cushioned as the forefoot
- Narrow footers, because there is already some wiggle room even for normal-sized wearers
The Nike KD 14 and Jordan XXXVI might be better alternatives for these cases.
The traction works... as long as the court is clean
There are no problems with grip as long as the game is played on clean courts. The variety in grip patterns, as well as the 3-mm deep tread depth, deliver excellent grip on various types of courts. According to the playtesters:
- "a lot of rubber to grab the court"
- "you will get a stop-on-a-dime grip"
- "one of the better tractions out there"
In addition, an expert claims that the shoe will give you "a ton of grip" on any court type: hardwood, rubberized, outdoor, and even carpet. Having such high levels of confidence, the reviewers are able to move and change directions much more quickly
On the downside, the outsole does attract dust, so wiping is definitely be needed when playing on dirtier surfaces.
The Jordan Zoom Separate pampers the forefoot, that's for sure
A lot of praise is given to the forefoot Air unit. "When I was jumping I could feel the Air compressing...and it's very plush," reports a player. Many reviewers also agree that there is a nice bounce-back and responsiveness to the cushion. And that you still get a good court feel.
However, there is definitely more cushioning in the forefoot than in the heel. If these shoe parts were siblings, the forefoot would definitely be this shoe's favorite. It is reported to be much better cushioned and supported. Even so, the heel-to-toe drop feels sufficient according to an expert.
Another basketball shoe reviewer claims that it's "not the most explosive out there" but more of a nimble type of shoe. So, if you are after a highly cushioned one, consider the Jordan 36 or 37 instead.
The upper wraps around the foot comfortably
The upper is composed of materials that aren't so premium, but this doesn't stop the shoe from providing much-needed comfort. Reviewers love the "fat padding" around the ankle as well as the well-padded and long tongue which both hug the foot in a pleasant way.
A couple of wearers also liked that the upper feels like a bootie design but the tongue is in fact separated, which makes it super easy to slide into the shoe.
The materials are also soft enough to not need any break-in period.
A stable and supportive shoe
The Jordan Zoom Separate is packed with features that make it a highly stable option for basketball. In the words of an expert, it's really "better than some of the flagship shoes."
Starting from the upper, all testers are happy with how the laces allow customization of the fit and lockdown. One playtester found it enough to just use the top eyelets but he says that "if you feel that you need to get a more snug fit, then using the bottom eyelets is an option."
Back in the heel, the containment is taken care of by a super wide TPU stabilizer. Most users say that it hugs the ankle nicely but a few testers are concerned with the lack of interior padding which could result in heel slips. As one of them shares: "I did feel like my heel was going up and down sometimes." So, it kind of depends on the shape of your Achilles and the way it fits into the back of the shoe from the start.
On the bright side, everyone LOVES the lateral outrigger in the forefoot. Along with the wide heel, it creates a stable base for the players all throughout the game. One of them "never really felt like [he] was going to roll." Another reviewer adds that such a wide base makes a step back or a hard crossover "only ankle-breaking for your opponent and not for you."
Not all reviewers agree on how well-ventilated the Jordan Zoom Separate is. While some say that the "air didn't pass through that much," others claim that this would be their "number one pick for really hot humid conditions."
One expert balances it out by saying that the shoe is "not crazy breathable but not suffocating either."
Slightly long and roomy
Those with average-sized feet either went true to size or got a half-size smaller to achieve a perfect fit. They do agree that the shoe runs a little bit on the long side and has quite a generous toe space.
However, this is great news for those with wide feet. They can go true to size.