The Best Basketball Shoes for Guards
If you are a quick guard and you like to beat your opponent off the dribble with deadly crossovers and smooth pull-up jumpers you need shoes that can keep up with your style of play.
What up guys? I’m Max, and today, I’ve got a top list for you guys. This is the top basketball shoes for Point Guards and ball handlers.
So, basically what a Point Guard needs in his basketball shoe is, I would say, responsiveness. So if the shoe makes you feel a little bit slow, if it’s heavy, if the cushion’s a little too soft, then obviously you’re not going to feel very fast in the shoe. So cushioning isn’t the most important, but it’s nice to have, as long as it doesn’t make you feel slow. Support needs to be there, especially if you’re doing a lot of lateral movements, a lot of Point Guards nowadays are very shifty. And the shoe overall needs to be pretty light.
So here’s my list. I have two tiers, so let’s get it started off with the Harden Volume Four. So the Harden Volume 4 is really nice. I actually have two colors of it. So my first pair is a gray one, is a fully translucent also, and I had a few issues with that on dust. And then I got a solid rubber with that green glow color, and I thought that was going to be a little bit better, but it’s still not the best on dust. If you’re playing on a clean court, traction’s incredible, but dust it wasn’t the best. So that’s why I’m putting it tier-two.
Cushion is really nice though. Light strike cushion, you’ve got pretty good impact protection for how thin it is. The court feels incredible in that shoe. Materials are soft and very comfortable, but the shoe overall is really supportive as well. So the Harden Volume 4 is very nice.
Same thing with the Dame 6, same exact thing. Really, really good traction on a clean court, but dust it was a little iffy. If I let too much dust build up I would just slide out, but everything else about that shoe, the cushioning is incredible, it’s soft. It might be a little bit too soft for some people. If you want a very responsive cushioning, it’s probably not the best option, but I really liked it. Material, not the best quality, but it’s 110 bucks so you can’t really complain.
And then, same exact thing for the KD12. The KD12 is incredible, it’s actually really nice. The material is super thin, especially in the forefoot, you have that smooth mesh. The tongue is very plush, that helps the material feel a little bit more premium. The cushioning setup, as you guys know the full length Zoom strobel is very, very nice, but the traction on dust was also pretty bad for me. Pretty hard to wipe, and if you let too much dust build up, it does slide out.
So a lot of you guys said the solid rubber outsole was a lot better. So I’m believing you guys, I’m taking your word for it. You guys were telling me in Instagram comments that the solid rubber was a lot better. So if that was the case, I didn’t personally try it, but if that’s the case, I’d probably put it in the first tier. But because I didn’t try it, I’m just putting it in the second tier. But if you can, try to get the solid rubber outsole.
All right, next is the Zoom UNVRS. So the Zoom UNVRS, same exact thing. Really no problems with dust, but I would slide out just a little bit if I was doing a hard stop. A hard lateral movement, I would experience it slide just a little bit. So because of that, I’m putting it in second tier.
Everything else about the shoe was incredible though. It’s supportive, but the materials, it feels like a sock. It’s super comfortable and you have that incredible cushioning setup. I’d say one of my favorite cushioning setups of the year with that Zoom strobel unit, the full length Zoom strobel, and you have a soft foam. So Zoom UNVRS, incredible shoe, just watch out for any hard lateral movements.
All right, we’re going to move on to the first tier. So in the first tier we’ve got the Curry 7. The Curry 7, I never have to worry about it. It’s minimal. It’s super light, probably one of the lightest shoes on this list. Traction is really, really nice. Good on a clean court and really good on a dusty court. I’d say the cushion, not the best, but it gets the job done and you feel really quick and fast in the shoe. So the Curry 7 is in the first tier.
Next shoe is the Jumpman Diamond Low. First of all, I just really like how the shoe looks. For the price, you get really nice material, it’s like a textile / EM material and the traction is incredible. Really, really nice on a clean and dusty setting. Cushioning, still really nice. The foam that the Jordan brand’s been using is soft. You’ve got a nice bounce in the forefoot from the Zoom unit and support and all that is there. So a really, really nice shoe if you like to feel quick and fast.
You guys already know about this shoe, the PG3. Incredible cushion, incredible traction. Materials are very thin. Very light feeling shoe as well. PG3’s got to be one of the favorite shoes on this list.
Moving on to the next shoe, is the Jordan 34. Jordan 34 if you want to feel quick and light. It’s probably one of the lightest Jordan shoes in this lineup that’s ever been made. And the traction’s really nice, you’re just going to need to wipe a little bit on dust, but it’s a quick and easy wipe. Cushioning is incredible with that forefoot Zoom unit. It’s a really large forefoot Zoom unit, it’s bouncy even if you like your playing in close. You feel very explosive. And then, the materials are super thin, paper thin. So it’s a light and minimal finished shoe and also very responsive.
And same thing goes with the Curry Low 2. Incredible traction, you have the alto curvature, which keeps you on your toes. You have that extra grip on the sidewall, on the medial side. And the materials and all that are super supportive, pretty damn nice for a $110 shoe as well. The cushioning sucks. So the cushioning is really bad.
Same thing goes with the Kyrie 6. Really, really nice traction, but it was a little iffy on dust. It is a light wipe though, so you just do a light wipe and the dust is gone, but you’re going to need to wipe pretty frequently, so just watch out for that. Cushioning is pretty nice, you have a little bit of heel compression, that Zoom turbo on the forefoot feels really nice though.
And then just the overall shoe is super, super supportive. So if you’re doing any type of lateral movements, whatever weight you are you’re going to feel supported. Also, another thing is it’s not the lightest and most minimal feeling shoe, which kind of sucks, but also you feel responsive playing. The traction and all that’s good, so if you don’t mind the weight as much, but personally, I like to have a little bit more of a minimal type of shoe. So there’s that.
Next shoe is the Kobe 4 Protro. Donny Boy had issues with his translucent pair, but I got the fade to black color with solid rubber outsole, and that traction is really. Cushion, incredible. But also you feel fast, so it’s a nice medium, it’s not too soft or anything like that. And the materials, they’re okay. There’s a little bit of pinching and you need to break in a little bit, but once you break it in materials gets soft and it’s very supportive. So, Kobe 4 Protro, really nice pick.
Next shoe is the Clyde Hardwood, and that’s Puma’s new basketball shoe. Traction is incredible. It does pick up a little bit of dust, but it is a pretty light and easy wipe. Cushioning is still really responsive, they’re using the pro foam, which is mostly responsive, not a lot of softness or plushness to it, but there’s a little bit of compression and it’s slightly soft. Materials are incredible. It feels really soft in the forefoot with that knit material and then you have pretty nice leather material on the back. And overall you just feel really light and quick on your feet when you’re playing this.
The same thing goes with OMN1S, the New Balance OMN1S. Traction’s incredible. Really wipes out. It does pick up a little bit of dust, but it is an easy wipe. And then you have an incredible cushioning set up, that full length blue sole. You get really good court feel. You get really good bounce. You get really good impact protection. It’s soft, but also you get really good court feel. And it feels really soft, incredible on foot, but it’s also really supportive. So the OMN1S, really, really nice.
So that about wraps it up for this video. Again, if you guys want a cop, I’ll try to leave links to all the shoes below. My favorite three shoes on this list will have to be, I really love the OMN1S. The OMN1S is really nice. I love the Kobe 4 Protro and I love the PG3.
There’s a lot of shoes that I’m missing. There’s a lot of nice shoes. All these shoes are pretty much you can’t really go wrong with. But anyways, hoping that helps you guys out and I’ll see you guys next time.
What makes a great shoe for point guards and shooting guards?
As a quick guard, traction is by far the most important aspect of a shoe’s performance. Sticky traction will allow you to blow by your defender with an explosive first step, help you to stop on a dime when attacking the basket, and give you the necessary grip to pester your opponent on defense. Shoes with bad traction will rob you of all your quickness, negate all your strengths, and might even make you slip on an opponent’s crossover – nobody wants that!
So, the most important thing as a guard is to get shoes with amazing traction.
Shoes with comfortable cushioning that make you feel like you’re walking on clouds are great for heavy big guys, but not for shifty guards. As a guard, you probably weigh a lot less than the Shaqs of this world, and therefore you need a lot less impact protection. In fact, mushy and soft cushioning often has a negative effect on your speed and quickness as it takes away from your court feel and makes cuts and first steps a split second slower.
As a guard, you want to have a responsive cushioning setup with excellent court feel that doesn’t take away from your quickness.
Style of Silhouette
In today’s game, most guards are playing in low or mid-top basketball shoes. These shoes are cut a lot lower around the ankles compared to traditional basketball “boots”. This style reduces the weight and allows a greater amount of flexibility and freedom of movement. The lost ankle support is made up for with other support features like extended outriggers and sturdy heel counters. If you still don’t feel comfortable playing in low-tops, or you are recovering from an ankle sprain take a look at ankle braces. Steph Curry is wearing an ankle brace every game, and he’s doing okay! Low or mid-tops are the way to go for guards.