Jordan CP3 V

The Jordan CP3 V

Introduction

What seemed to be the longest off season in recent memory, the end of the NBA lockout this past Fall had teams in a frenzy, as General Managers throughout the league rushing to solidify their teams for the shortened season.  Centered around the biggest transaction was All-Star Chris Paul.  After a circumstances nixed a move from the New Orleans Hornets to the Los Angeles Lakers, the feisty point guard would end up with the most unlikely suitors – the Los Angeles Clippers.  On the sneaker front, Jordan Brand continues to support one of their main athletes with a fifth signature model.  Equipped with the usual Podulon® cushioning, the CP3 V follows the light weight trend, now featuring a Flywire construction.  Representing “Fly Around” in the 2012 Jordan Brand campaign is the Chris Paul Jordan CP3 V.

Adding Flywire construction, the CP3 V follows the light weight and low cut trend now common basketball shoe industry.  The features include the following:

  • Flywire constructed upper for light weight performance
  • Dual density cushioning in the forefoot with Podulon® at the heel
  • Rubber outsole with herringbone traction pattern
  • Sculpted mid foot shank plate for stability
  • Cushioned Achilles/heel notch for added lock down

Aesthetics and Styling

After 3 years of designs resembling past Air Jordan models, the CP3.IV opted for a low cut and streamlined look.  Following along those lines and retaining the high performing Podulon® cushioning, the CP3 V adds a Flywire upper to shed a bit more weight.  Compared to other signature shoes on the market the aesthetics are similar to another Jordan Brand signature performer – the Fly Wade 2 – with a simple and straightforward look.  It is safe to say that, style wise, the shoe is not the most eye catching.  However, what is not lost are the personal touches which are incorporated into the design.  Like the Nike Zoom KD IV, the CP3 V has discreet and hidden graphics and symbols, which gives personality to an otherwise mundane design.  During a special introductory event, Paul and the Jordan Brand designers unveiled the many color schemes which may hit the market later in the year.  So far this season, Paul has been spotted in Clipper friendly colored models, but for the purposes of this Performance Review, we took the court in the standard black and grey color scheme.

Jordan CP3 V

Triangular cut outs and bowling references tie the shoe personally to Paul himself

From the side, the simple design of the CP3 V stops short of being a full on low cut.  Other than the large jumpman logo and small triangle design, the shoe has a smooth look, matching the matte finished Flywire upper.  Our look starts with the outsole, where two traction patterns are found.  The contoured outsole is molded with a triangular pattern running from toe to the heel, with fine herringbone sections dominating the medial forefoot and raised heel portions.  Vertical and horizontal flex grooves run through the forefoot, with an outrigger extending on the lateral, and the herringbone traction pattern offering support up the medial forefoot.  Also on the medial side, a strip of the outsole creeps up for added arch support.  This small strip is marked with a small tally mark design.  The mid foot sees a sculpted stiff plate, with a Chevron design.  Also at the mid foot, on the triangular rubber portion, is another personal touch and the first inkling of a bowling influence.  As Paul is a bowling fanatic, the size of the shoe is marked on a small triangular piece, taken from bowling shoes, which are always marked with a size.  Rounding out the under half is the heel area, where more flex grooves are observed around the raised, herringbone portion, which houses the Poudulon® cushioning.  A white jumpman logo signifies it as a  Jordan Brand performer.  To finish off the foundation, a thick foam midsole outlines the lower half.  The “PODULON” logo is molded on the outrigger, while the heel has a Morse Code like dot pattern.

Making up the upper is a light weight, matte finished synthetic, supporting the Flywire strands.  Stitched on in one piece, the upper is smooth, with the Flywire strands stemming, as always, from the eyelets.  The simple and almost seamless design has a smooth rounded toe box with an extended throat line, much like the Fly Wade 2.  The bowling influence shows up again, where a dot formation at the throat line mirrors the ten pin set up.  On the sides, a white jumpman logo sits towards the heel on the lateral, with the “FLYWIRE” branding taking the medial side.  A personal touch comes with the triangle cut outs on each side, representing the 61 points scored by Paul in a high school game (the remaining triangles are found on the tongue).

At the rear, a synthetic hang tag is stitched through the center.  With the upper materials meeting, the stiff counter has a foam base.  Above the counter, the mesh collar starts and continues along the sides.  On the inside, padding is minimal and the collar is lined with felt like synthetic.  Achilles and heel support comes in the form of a padded notch, which is made of leather and stitched on at the rear.

Standard oval laces run through the six eyelets, which are punctured through the synthetic upper.  The laces are topped off with sharp plastic aglets, with the number “336” engraved.  A light weight mesh tongue forms an inner sleeve, with elastic material stitched on the sides for comfortable fit.  The tongue is lined as the collar is, with the felt like synthetic.  On the top of the tongue, a smooth patch sits with a lace holder and “CP3” logo.  The final triangles are cut through the material with another 5 dot pattern sitting underneath the logo.  Finally, a thick and responsive insole covers a bouncy foot bed, where a final white jumpman logo is printed on the heel.

Comfort and Fit

Getting into the CP3 V is both comfortable and easy.  The lacing system can be manipulated within seconds to house those with wide feet.  First and foremost, the inner sleeve provides great hold around the foot.  Sizing may be a half size big, as the rounded toe box has room both length and height wise.  Lace pressure is felt down the center of the shoe, and the upper is noticeably thin.  One of the best aspects of the fit is around the ankles and Achilles.  Although the shoe is low cut with very little padding, ankle security is surprisingly good and comfortable.  Compared to the upper, the collar feels a bit bulky barely covering the ankles, but the support and security is a bright spot.  Lock down is also very good, as the Achilles notch rises high.  The heels are not flush on the back end of the counter, but when laced tightly, back end support and comfort from the top down is great.  With Podulon® integrated into the heels, the cushioning base is thick and firm, with a bouncy feel.  At heel, the Podulon® has the signature hollow feel, but fits in well with the rest of the set up, which is bouncy yet responsive.  Cushioning is very comfortable without being too plush.  Also, the contours and design of the outsole on the medial side provide great arch support.  A somewhat bulky, but comfortable, supportive, and responsive fit is what the CP3 V brings to the table.

Jordan CP3 V

A thick and responsive base is perfect for quick and heavy play

Performance

Stepping on to the hardwood, the CP3 V has somewhat of a bulky feel.  The cushioning set up has a firm but comfortable feel, and the thickness of the sole is prominent, as the profile of the shoe is not low.  Like the Fly Wade 2, running is aided by an extended throat line.  The synthetic and Flywire upper has great flexibility and comfort, while the cushioning base has a slightly bouncy feel.  Weight wise, the shoe does not have a light weight feel, as the collar, Achilles notch, and foundation carry the bulk of the weight.  Unlike many light weight, low cut basketball performers, the CP3 V seems suited for a half court style of play over high tempo, up and down the court runs.  Highlighting the performance is the responsive cushioning set up, perfect for players who base their game around quickness and explosiveness.  Dense, thick, and very comfortable, pushing off whether taking a first step off the dribble or launching into the air for a jumper, the shoe is deceptively quick.  The slight bounce in each step adds comfort, especially with the heel Podulon®, without bogging down movement, and the overall consistency in feel of the lower half is an important factor in keeping performance quick.  Movements all around are very fluid, through the thin synthetic upper and dense sole.  Again, pushing off the sole and moving forward or laterally, the upper bends naturally, pushing the player in the right direction with good balance.  For landings, the consistency with the cushioning again plays a factor, taking all impact comfortably.  In all, the CP3 V is a solid responsive and quick performer on the court.

Another high performing aspect of the CP3 V is observed with excellent stability.  Starting from at the top, the collar gives plenty of comfortable ankle support.  Considering the lower cut and minimal padding, the grip around the ankles is just enough to provide support for taxing moves, while at the same time allowing for some freedom of movement.  The rear Achilles notch does a great job of holding the back end in place, and for the most part, ankle stability is never an issue.  For the foot, the inner sleeve not only holds, but adds another layer of protection.  Since the synthetic upper is rather thin, overall stability may have been compromised, but the inner sleeve does a great job keeping the foot in place.  Moving to the lower half, the mid foot plate, coupled with the semi-cage formed by the outsole on the medial side bring excellent arch support.  At times there may be a little sliding of the foot, when making fast and decisive cuts, but for the most part, the foot is always supported.  Those who tend to tax their sneakers on the court will find the CP3 V suitable.

Equipped with a multi-patterned outsole, traction works well for the heavy footed player.  With the fine herringbone sections specifically placed, traction is both sticky and fluid.  That is, when moving forward, or rocking back to stop, the herringbone sections provide excellent grip, and once back in motion, the triangular cut out portions bring quick responsiveness.  Players who tend to stop and start, on the perimeter or in the lane, can break and cut with great quickness.  A very well made design, traction for the CP3 V is very balanced, providing both grip and responsiveness.  In the area of ventilation, the shoe does perform well.  For the most part, sweating is not an issue, although the foot may get hot below during intense play.

Conclusion

If nothing else the three signature models that Jordan Brand has released this year do capture the style of play for each athlete.  Much like the Fly Wade 2, the CP3 V captures the quick and heavy play of Chris Paul himself.  Also, as the Fly Wade 2 was designed with the rarely used Lunarlon cushioning, the Podulon® and dual-density on the CP3 V shows another very responsive and consistent set up that would be a great addition to future models.  The CP3 line has been laying under the radar for the life span of existence, and can be considered a hidden gem.  A quick, responsive performer with great stability, the CP3 V is no doubt one of the top performers this year, let alone an excellent Jordan Brand shoe.  Released last month, the fifth Chris Paul signature Jordan Brand sneaker is available now at the Official Online Nike Store.

This shoe is comparable to:

Jordan Fly Wade 2
Jordan Play In These F TXT
Jordan CP3.IV