** I just got a pair of the yellow 3Zero and the sizing is true to size like the regular Curry 3.

I lined these up next to each other and the royals are just longer . The flex grooves don’t match up as you can see. You can see the extra length below as well. 


Not sure if it’s a colorway thing or a defect with the the royal colorway. My sizing advice is to buy true to size and half size down in each colorway to decide on sizing. Quality control, look into it UA

Executive Summary: the 3Zero is a minimally padded version of the Curry 3 and the overall fit is good when you go down half a size. The upper reminds me more of the Curry 2 with its minimalism. The “adjustable heel” doesn’t work any better than a regular one.  

It’s no secret that Curry 3 sales were disappointing this year but that was to be expected after last year’s loss to the Cavs.  The ho hum design and pricing was partially to blame it but really it was just the band wagoners jumping off that sent UA Curry sales downward. With the 3Zero, UA is introducing a new team line that most budget ballers will find familiar yet satisfying. But keep waiting for price cuts of course. 

Pros: traction, responsive cushioning, fit, support and stability, containment 

Cons: traction on dusty floors needs wiping, slightly sloppier fit than signature line

Sizing: half size down, wide footers need to decide between proper length or preferred width * see update at top of page. True to size depending on colorway possibly*

Best for: guards and Curry lovers

Buying Advice: wait, Curry 3 sales are dismal and these aren’t going to help much. $95 is fair $60 or less is around the bottom 

Weight

Not that it matters to me but the 3Zero in a size 11 came in at one ounce HEAVIER  than the Curry 3 at 15 ounces. I thought these would be the same or lighter after reading the Nice Nicks interview. If you didn’t read it, here you go Curry 3Zero NiceKicks

Traction 

Same as the 3 Mid same as the 3 Low. Slightly better than the CFD but not nearly as good as the Curry 2 and 2.5. Great on clean floors but will require wiping when dusty. 

Cushioning


UA states it’s a Micro G carrier and Charged in the heel…maybe it is maybe it isn’t but it feels a tad firmer than the 3. I felt no signs of Micro G so just because a company says XXX cushioning is there doesn’t mean squat nowadays. 

The additional firmness is mostly due to a thinner Ortholite insole. I swapped the insoles with the 3 and the shoes felt almost identical underfoot. It doesn’t really make a big difference in terms of impact protection but it makes the step in comfort a little better.


Overall there is no real difference in cushioning so if you didn’t like the cushioning on the 2.5 or 3, you won’t like these either.  Personally I find these work well for me and my game but to each  their own.

Fit

*see update at top of page. True to size depending on colorway possibly*

Left size 11 compared to my Curry 3 size 11, right 10.5 
Although looking at just the exterior of a shoe isn’t ideal when determining sizing, the 3Zero runs longer than the Curry 3 and I recommend going down half a size for everyone. Why the outsole is so much longer is beyond me, maybe it’s bad quality control ? There is even a little more length inside the shoe due to its more minimal less padded design. As a wide footer myself, I initially tried my normal size 11 but there was so much extra length and dead space above my foot that it looked like a small biodome. 

Left to right, 3Zero size 11 has thumbs width and then some, Curry 3 size 11 and 3 Zero 10.5 each have about a pointer finger’s width

I decided to go down half a size and I was much happier even if the width took a little time to get used to. Usually I don’t care about deadspace above my foot but with the shoe running long, add in the thinner insole and less padded upper, going down in size was preferred. 

You can see how much excess space there is in the toe box with my true size 11

Wide footers who want more space or have a higher instep will want to try on or can go true to size. Going true to size didn’t make the shoe unplayable at all just sloppier feeling than I like. You can see a difference in precision or tolerance. 

The Curry 3 is made for a specific player while the other is basically team shoe made to fit a lot of different players’ feet. 

Per Nicekicks interview:

Kort Neumann: “Basically, we wanted to take his shoe, and in designing for the postseason, we wanted to make it a lighter version. We started with a marathon shoe, and now we’re building a racing spike or a race car for a 2-month time period. We wanted to simplify the expression of his shoe, without compromising containment. We made some changes during the season based on feedback from him, and we were able to make some updates and design the shoe that we have now

The quote from Neumann, the designer of the 3Zero, is indeed true. The 3Zero upper feels a lot less plush inside the shoe. It feels a lot more like the Curry 2 in terms of how it feels overall. I still love the Curry 2 so it gave the 3Zero a very familiar feel. 

Adjustable Heel counter 

Per Neumann 

“It’s an adjustable heel, for full containment. How it works is you have offset eyelets, and when you start lacing down into those, those eyelets will pull and get closer to each other. What that does, is that engages the collar to then crank down and lock in around your heel. It really keeps your foot from moving around and provides that stability.”

Good in theory and on paper, it does not work any better than a normal set up though and I’ll try to explain why as best as I can.  It’s basically a soft material version of the Rose 6 cage set up  which was also just a different way to skin the same cat. 

I actually cut the straps off the Rose 6 and got better lockdown

The “adjustable” heel is not fully  independent and is limited by the fixed heel counter and as you can see above, the straps feed right into the regular outer eyelets of the shoe. So what you basically get is just another layer of padding. If you don’t  believe me just skip the adjustable eyelets and lace up the shoes.  Most of the heel lockdown occurs below the strap anyways. 

When I pulled these out entirely and laced without them, I just had to pull a little more. Same lockdown just less padding 

Regardless, lockdown is perfectly fine though, and again feels more similar to the Curry 2 than 3 which is a good thing. There is too much puffy padding around the Curry 3 ankle and the laces still loosen on me due to the large plastic eyelets during play. 

Materials 


The 3Zero is a more budget friendly Curry model so at the lower price point I expected some sacrifices and those sacrifices come in the form of the materials. Reinforced mesh is used instead of Threadborne and plastic instead of carbon fiber for the meta wing and midfoot shank. 


The mesh is reinforced with nylon for strength and to maintain flexibility. There is a little stiffness in the medial forefoot from the TPU but it goes always quickly. 

Not really a difference in performances though, just less innovative tech materials. No big deal or surprises here. 

Support and Stability 

No change in height just an Achilles notch

Everyone knows the story about Curry’s ankles so the 3Zero does a good job with support even without the use of carbon fiber or the extended midsole heel counter. Since the upper is flexible flexible like the Curry 2 and your heel isn’t engulfed in the foam heel counter of the 3, the 3Zero allows for a little more freedom since it employs a more flexible plastic internal heel counter but still keeps some rigidity from the foam portion. My heel sits about half and inch below the foam in the pic above.


As good as it is at support, this wing plate is really bad with sarcasm, hyperbole, and interpretation. Is this thing on??  Time to get a new website editor UA

Stability is exactly the same as the Curry 3 which was very good as is with a contoured forefoot and flat outsole. 
Overall I have no issues with the support and stability just like the Curry 3. 

Containment 


I’ve never had an issue with containment on any Curry shoe and these are no different despite the use of mesh and a thin TPU overlay. 
Funny how a 190 pound players shoe has better containment than a 260 pound 6’8″ players shoe isn’t it ?  

Conclusion 

The Curry 3Zero is a nice start to a new team model franchise from UA.  I like it a little more than the 3 Mid since the 3Zero stays laced tightly throughout play and I like the minimally padded feel.  Out of the three Curry models released this year, I’d put the low first, the 3Zero slightly behind at second and then the mid. I don’t need all the bells and whistles or tech mumbo jumbo to enjoy a shoe on court and the 3Zero is just that; no frills, nothing fancy except for the marketing of the adjustable heel of course. In terms of comfort though, I find the 3 Mid the most comfortable overall due to all the padding and thicker insole. Although it has no real bearing on performance, I like Neumann’s race car analogy because it is the best way to describe the difference in how the 3Zero and Curry 3 Mid feel on foot. 

UA finds itself in a weird spot pricing wise with the 3Zero. Cheaper materials and basically the same shoe as the 3 Mid, the 3Zero is priced $20 lower than the suggested retail price of the “premium” 3 Mid, yet is $20 more than than the Mid due to early price cuts of the Mid on UA.com. The 3Zero isn’t moving any needles either so just wait and be patient for price cuts. These can already be had on Eastbay for $96 after coupons and with more colorways slated to release, that just equals more inventory which equals even more price cuts. Of course if Curry goes atomic in the playoffs and the Warriors win the title (Vegas has them at 2-3 favorites for Pete’s sake) reinforce those wheels and axles on the bandwagon because it’s going to get heavy again since there just isn’t any better marketing than winning

Photo courtesy of Jaime Valdez-USA TODAY Sports

29 Comment on “Under Armour Curry 3Zero Performance Analysis and Review

  1. Pingback: Under Armour Curry 3 Performance Review and Comparison | schwollo.com

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