Performance Review: Jordan Super.Fly 4
This year has been a nostalgic year for Jordan Brand. While the brand's ethos remains technology and innovation, they never stray too far from what has made them so successful over the years: great storytelling. This year we have witnessed the resurrection of some of the most popular marketing ads in the brands history such as the Hare Jordan campaign that features Bugs Bunny re-teaming with MJ.
Following the Looney Tunes theme, the first thing that came to mind when I first saw the Super.Fly 4 was the movie Space Jam due to its unique and cartoonish style. The sneaker is inspired by Marvin the Martian, the classic loveable anti-hero from the Tune Squad who is all about universal power and destruction. The Martian storyline fits well with a player like Blake Griffin who plays an equally otherworldly game.
The Super.Fly line has been one of the most underrated in the Jordan lines from both a performance and value standpoint. Griffin has been the face of the Super.Fly since he signed with the brand. The first colorway set to be released features a black gradient mesh upper with a fluorescent green outsole, laces and tongue with a touch of red that accents around the sneaker and controls the Jumpman branding, Marvin the Martian personified into sneaker form
Orlando Magic guard, Jordan Brand athlete and high flyer Victor Oladipo plans on wearing the sneaker on court this year as well along with Griffin.
"The Super.Fly is an amazing shoe, it keeps getting better and better every year, so I am looking forward to wearing them this year," says Oladipo. "Its a really light shoe, I already seen it and I am looking forward to playing in it."
Slideshow: Super.Fly 4
The SF4 performance aspect is top notch and a nice upgrade from the Super.Fly 3. The FlightSpeed (formerly FlightPlate) cushioning system maximizes the Zoom Air Unit in the heel and is built for superior flight by transitioning the heel to forefoot for better liftoff.
The other major change is the improved upper. Gone is the stiff upper of the SF3. In its place is a combination of mesh and foam, much like the CP3.VIII AE. It's a breathable mesh over a light structural foam support that makes it easier to maneuver in while cutting down ounces.
The SF4's support system reminds me a lot of the previous tech models under the Nike family such as the Air Jordan XX9, SF3, Kobe X. The webbed straps integrates with the laces to create a ready-to-play fit right out the box.
The sneaker has great traction. Combined with the external heel counter, it provides great stability. There were no issues running and cutting in a pristine indoor court (Full disclosure: These were wear-tested in Jordan's Terminal 23 court.). Keep in mind, though, these probably won't last as long on outside courts due to the soft rubber at the bottom.
In the end there are really few cons with the SF4 and comes highly recommended for that late-summer basketball shoe re-up. The brand has constantly improved each Super.Fly model and in the SF4 has combined the elements of some of the best performance models this past year in one silhouette.
The SF4is available now for $150. You can also customize your own on NIKEiD.