The Under Armour Curry 3 is like a fine wine except it’s not; it’s the opposite of a fine wine. The more you play in it and the more time goes on, the worse and worse it gets. That’s not to say it’s a horrendous shoe but there are some things that stand out that prevent the shoe from being a go-to.
Let’s start off with the most disappointing aspect of the sneaker (in my opinion) which is the traction. Right out of the box, it was great as it should be. The full length herringbone is no joke and grips clean floors extremely well. With my style of play (quick cuts, rapid changes in movement), it was perfect. That is until I played on other courts that aren’t perfectly clean.
After playing in a gym with clean floors and having the sneaker stick to the floor like glue, I thought that these would have amazing traction everywhere. Boy, was I mistaken. I took it to a local YMCA and almost immediately, I had no grip. Even with numerous wipes, the grippiness would last about one or two trips down the floor before it lost grip again. I understand that it might have just been the conditions of the court so I throughly cleaned the outsole and tried it out on another court…
… Which yielded the same result. I played on one of the courts on my campus and the traction was still bad. Even after numerous wipes and numerous attempts to clean the outsole, it just would not grip as well as the initial use. Disappointed yet undeterred to make the sneaker work, I went back to the only initial gym in which the sneaker stuck like glue.
To my amazement, the Curry 3 STILL didn’t grip the clean floor. While I was slipping and sliding all over the court, people in Kobe XI’s, Kobe X’s, KD 8/9’s, Kyrie 1’s were gripping the floor to their hearts content. I actually had to switch out of the Curry’s and slipped into my Kobe XI EM because they gripped better than the Curry 3.
Although the Curry 3 may have a cool storytelling aspect on the outsole, the traction is disappointingly bad. After talking with sneaker reviewers with more knowledge than I, they suggested that it may potentially be the colorway I have because different colorways have different rubber compounds/materials and it turns out, the blue colorway I have is known to have some bad materials. All in all, I would give the traction a 2 out of 5.
The cushion in the Curry 3 is Charged Foam, which is basically what we saw in the Curry 2. This provides adequate court feel, albeit the foam is more firm than Boost, for example. The Curry 3 Technical Specifications state that the Charged Foam creates a “sensation of ‘DYNAMIC CONTAINMENT’.” which I can somewhat feel when going through the motions.
Although the midsole is strictly Charged Foam, the insole is more plush than previous renditions. It feels plush and soft, much like an ortholite insole, which provides great stepping comfort as well as softens the blow of having a firm midsole underfoot. It’s noticeable when you first try on the shoe and it feels great.
The insole doesn’t really lose its plushness and softness as time goes on which is a definite plus, especially if you’re playing for long periods of time. Overall even though the foam is firm, the insole more than makes up for the firmness and it’s comfortable to wear for a couple hours without the fear of having aching bones and joints at the end of the night. These get a 4 out of 5.
The fit is great as long as you get the proper size. Going true to size is the way to go as I went true to size and there was just the perfect amount of space between my toes and the end of the shoe. However if you’re a wide footer, it might be best to go in store to try them out to make sure you get the optimum fit.
The new “Threadborne S*” provides a woven/knit-like feeling on the lateral side of shoe, akin to what you would find with some adidas models with Primeknit or anything with Flyknit. Along with Threadborne, there’s also the return of Anafoam on the medial side of shoe, all the way to the heel. Lastly, there’s fuse on high-wear areas such as the toe and all along the medial side to keep all the materials in place.
The support comes mainly from the initial fit of the shoe. There’s also a carbon fiber midfoot shank that provides torsional support as well as two “meta wing plates” on both the lateral and medial side of the shoe. These plates are similar to what you’d find on an airplane wing, and act as stabilizers in order to keep your foot secured during side-to-side movements. Along with that, there’s a slightly pronounced outrigger, further stabilizing you with side-to-side movements.
There’s also a large exaggerated heel counter with Stephen Curry’s own branding, as well his famous motto “I can do all things”. The heel counter isn’t just for show however, as it cups the heel area (obviously) of your foot very well and will accommodate any ankle brace.
With the fit and all the support features coming together perfectly, these get a 5 out of 5 for Fit/Support.
Overall, the Curry 3 gets an 11 out of 15, good for a solid 73% (if you were curious about the percentage). The cushion was pretty good, especially the insole, which is a lot more forgiving than the firm Charged Foam. The Fit/Support was top-notch, allowing for a secure fit and a steady ride as long as you got the proper size for you. The materials were pretty good as well and it allowed the shoe to conform to your foot, which only adds to the great Fit/Support. Ultimately, the terrible traction is what dooms the sneaker. The inconsistency and the fact that regardless of how many times I clean it, it just refuses to grip well is disappointing to say the least. After having awesome traction on the Curry 2, the Curry 3 just fails to live up to that. Although the materials are a vast improvement from the 2, I don’t think a change in materials justifies the $10 increase.
You can grab the Under Armour Curry 3 now at all major sports retailers and shoe stores near you for $140. Leave any comments down below for any questions you may have.