A look at the Nike KD 14
(Featured Image via Nick DePaula)
Kevin Durant is easily one of the most recognizable NBA stars in recent times. Durant has been a Nike athlete since 2007, all the way back when he was a rookie. Both parties have enjoyed a fruitful partnership. To put things in perspective, he's been wearing Nike sneakers with his name since his debut. A 14th signature shoe is incredibly unique in the sneaker industry, as Durant joins the ranks of LeBron James and Kobe Bryant as names with lines that have thrived for at least that long.
Reintroduction of the beloved strap
For the latest NBA star’s trademark basketball shoe, Nike has reintroduced an element that has been missing on his shoes since the KD7. Eagle-eyed fans should be able to instantly recognize this. It is none other than the strap across the laces.
Straps are fairly common in the basketball world, however the ones on Nike KD 14s are significant. It’s more than just a simple strap, it’s a callback to the KD line roots. The strap was a key component on both the KD 4 and the KD 7, which are largely regarded as two of Durant's trademark line's greatest models. The style of the strap, particularly on the medial side of the shoe, was influenced by the iconic Air Presto silhouette, according to the brand.
Features of the KD14
The KD14 features a toned-down design that evokes the simplicity of earlier models such as KD1 and KD2. The full-length Zoom Air strobel introduced in the KD12 is also maintained in this pair. This should help with the responsiveness needed on court. The aforementioned strap combines legacy aspects of the Nike Bruin with extended Swoosh branding at the tail.
The upper is made of an engineered mesh, this gives KD the opportunity to be much more creative as the design has been layered for multiple colourway options. Durant has been known to showcase subjects such as art, music, tech, and other off court engagements he may have with his sneakers.
"It's been a while since we incorporated the strap, which excites me," stated Durant, in a press release with Nike. "My other favorite part about the shoe is the cushioning, which helps me feel low to the ground and still helps give me some of that energy back."
Nike KD14 Syles
There is no other colourway in the sneaker world that is more famous than Black/Red, or fondly referred to as Bred. Any major sneaker line would always be decked out in “bred” colours once in their lifetime. The upper is made of black and red, with white speckled decoration running over the Swoosh on the mid-foot strap. A white midsole and red rubber outsole completes the look.
KD14 “Deep Royal”/Psychedelic
One of the most searched colourways of the KD14 line must be the “Deep Royal” also known as the KD14 Psychedelic. Unlike the other KD14s, this one offers a much louder motif in the form of a psychedelic mosaic found across the upper and tongue. However, a handful of the elements are kept simple and solid-colored. The sole, for example, is a neutral white colour, additionally, the strap above is a complete "Deep Royal" arrangement.
This colourway is a simple one meant to match the colour scheme of the Brooklyn Nets. The pairs upper is dominated with a white shade which allows the black to pop on the branding fixtures such as the Swoosh and KD logo. Although the cushioning utilizes a soft yellow, it is kept to a minimum touch.
How Does the Nike KD14 Perform On Feet?
Most reviewers have stated that the KD14 provides a good amount of grip regardless of surface. It delivers the ideal balance of comfort, impact protection, and responsiveness. The fit is less tight than prior KDs and should suit for most players. Although those with broad feet should look to take a 0.5-1 size up for maximum comfort. Overall, critics believe that the KD14 is a small upgrade over the KD13 and a fantastic overall performance that is well worth the price tag.