Executive summary: Excellent cushioning but in between sizing, slightly sloppy heel fit, and dust attracting translucent outsole hurt the shoes’ overall performance.
So initially I wasn’t going to review the HD16 Elite because the price was prohibitory in my opinion. $200 for a Hyperdunk? You have to be crazy. Of course in typical HD fashion, these were available for discount on Eastbay and Footlocker so I grabbed them for a much more reasonable $160.
The other reason I decided to review these was because, other than the outsole and raised midsole, the HD16 and the Elite version have very little in common. Here is my regular version review
Hyperdunk 2016 Review
Pros: traction, Zoom feels great, stabilty, containment, materials nicer than regular HD
Cons: support, some heel slip to start but improves, overall fit is inconsistent
Sizing: most everyone should go down 1/2 a size but may be too tight for some. Wide footers will want to go true to size for comfort reasons
Best for: guards
14 oz or 1.5 oz lighter than the regulars HD
Same set up as the regular HD so it is great on very clean floors. However, the translucent sole is VERY STICKY and picks up everything like the Kobe XI outsole.
It doesn’t slip and slide like the Kobe XI since the pattern isn’t super shallow but you have to wipe often even on slightly dusty floors. The regular outsole worked much better for me with less wiping required.
When it’s clean, the traction is great, but when it catches dust, get ready to wipe.
I really wish Nike just put this full length set up in all of the Hyperdunks. Usually I don’t care that much about full length versus targeted Zoom but the Elite Zoom feels so much better and it makes the shoe fun to wear.
I’m still not convinced that the holes in the sole help much in terms of the trampoline effect but I put these on par with the Jordan XII and almost as good as the Zoom BB set up. Let’s hope Nike continues to bring real Zoom back. These will make my Zoom list
Well done Nike!
Fit and materials
Another shoe with weird sizing…
While the regular HD fit perfectly true to size, the Flyknit version has a lot more space at the toe, about a thumbnail’s width (true to size for me is a pointer finger width). I’m guessing the extra space is due to the change from Fuse to Flyknit.
I preferred the width of my true to size 11 and wasn’t really bothered by the extra length. However, I was getting some heel slip in the size 11 so I went down half a size to a 10.5. It started off too tight but loosened up enough after break in.
I recommend going half a size down for narrow and regular footers. Wide footers will want to try on because it may be too tight.
Now the heel slip is a whole different issue. Even with the 10.5 I had some heel slip to start but it got down to being acceptable to me.
Heel slip in a mid? Well the HD Elite really isn’t a mid.
Heel slip is very minimal like the Crazylight Boost 2016 but there is some movement up and down as well as side to side. I was disappointed with the lockdown because I just came off perfect lockdown of the regular HD16.
I’ve always had heel slip issues with lows so I’m not as easy to please as others might be (thus almost all my shoes are mids). The only things holding the foot in place are the the laces, heel padding and to some extent the compression sock.
Another issue I had with the upper was sliding forward in the shoe. Since the upper is so soft and flexible, my foot would slide forward on hard stops. Once again, an extra eyelet would have helped.
Putting on the Hyperdunk Flyknit isn’t as much of a chore as I thought it would be because it pulls on like a sock.
I had some deadspace in the toebox due to glue backing but after sizing down it went away.
Overall the fit isn’t as good as the regular Hyperdunk 2016
Support and stability
Support comes solely from the fit and heel counter. The sock is only there for proception purposes and as an ankle warmer. The heel fit isn’t as good as the regular HD but it is acceptable. However, if you are looking support first and foremost, look elsewhere or get the regular HD.
Stabilty is excellent just like the regular HD.
The foot doesn’t sit as low in the shoe which I’m guessing is due to the Zoom set up. The regular HD sits where the outsole meets the midsole while the HD Flyknit sits about half up. In addition the Flyknit stretches more than the Fuse found on the regular.
Overall containment is still very good but not as good as the regular Hyperdunk
I like the HD16 Flyknit, especially the cushioning, but I can’t say I would pick it over the regular Hyperdunk. The cushioning and the range of motion is much better than the regular Hyperdunk but you’re giving up a better, more consistent fit as well as lateral containment not to mention traction performance on dusty floors (as well as some extra cash).