Under Armour Curry 3 Performance Review
After breaking the record for made 3 pointers in a season for the third year in a row, winning a second MVP by an unprecedented unanimous decision, getting to the NBA Finals (and blowing a 3-1 lead), and helping to sign the biggest free agent of the season, what else could Stephen Curry do to occupy his time? Release his third signature shoe, of course. Hot off of the success of his second shoe, the Under Armour Curry 2, the baby-faced assassin unveiled his newest kicks a few months ago, the Under Armour Curry 3. Sporting a drastically different design, new materials, and coming off of Curry and Under Armour’s huge success with the Curry 1 and Curry 2, this was supposed to be a massive release. Rumors are that the Curry 3 hasn’t sold very well, but does it perform well on the basketball court?
The Under Armour Curry 3 features a simple herringbone pattern with thin grooves, a pivot point in the forefoot, and a hard rubber compound. The traction is decent, on a clean court the stopping power is very good, probably a 9/10. However, this outsole attracts a ton of dust and since the grooves are close together, it is requires frequent and extensive wiping to get it out. When dust does inevitably get stuck to the outsole of the Curry 3, you experience some slipping and a definite loss of bite. Overall, the Sole Brothers give the traction on the Curry 3 a rating of 8/10.
Under Armour and Stephen Curry opted to use nearly the same cushioning setup that has been featured in every one of the Curry lineup, Charged foam. There are some minor tweaks this time around. The Charged midsole extends up in the heel area to form the heel counter (with a TPU counter inside), they used a thin insole, and they implemented a carbon fiber midfoot shank for tosional support that also extends above the midsole (more on this part later). The insole is not particulary special, its soft but since it is pretty thin, it doesn’t do much to change the overall cushioning system. The Charged foam midsole, like in the Curry 2, provides excellent responsiveness, good court feel, minimal impact protection, and no bounce whatsoever. This setup is good for a player who is light on their feet, fast, and needs a responsive ride to execute shifty moves like a guard. Overall, the Curry 3’s cushion earns a rating of 7/10.
The biggest change from last year’s Curry shoe is the upper. The lateral side and toe area use a material called Threadborne, a woven material derived from paracord technology to be light and strong. The medial side and heel area are constructed with a body mapped, molded Anafaom piece for extra comfort and lockdown. As mentioned earlier, the carbon fiber wing that works as a midfoot shank in the midsole extends up the sides of the shoe between the heel and the arch of the foot to, as Under Armour puts it, “expressly support the joint that connects the ankle and heel bones for better balancing, pivoting, and shock absorption,”. The upper is fit together in a half-bootie construction. The Threadborne material feels very thin and stiff and plastic-like at first, but once it is broken in it feels soft like a jacquard. The same goes with the Anafoam area, it is stiff at first but feels soft and supportive once it breaks in. The materials by themselves (implementation is a bit different) are amazing, earning a rating of 10/10.
Fit: The Curry 3 does not fit very well, there is a lot of dead space above your toes and feels a bit unstable as a result. It seems to fit a tad long (Sammy was testing a size 8 which is 1/2 of a size up for him which is probably why) so go true to size and the length issue should be good. The Curry 3 does fit wider than the Curry 2, which is disappointing since the Curry 2’s fit is what made the Sole Brothers love it so much.
Support: This is a very supportive shoe. The materials do not stretch and the ankle support was so good that Sammy did not wear his ankle braces at all in the shoe. The height of the shoe (which is taller than last year’s model) is surprisingly supportive without restricing movement at all.
Lockdown: The Curry 3 provides good lockdown, although it has the same quirk as the Curry 2 in the heel. In the heel area, your foot doesn’t move or feel loose, but you just don’t feel very locked in or secured. The forefoot lockdown was good, no issues to report. Overall, the Curry 3 earns a rating of 8/10 for fit/support/lockdown
Ventilation, Durability, and Aesthetics
Ventilation: The shoe felt very well ventilated, earning a rating of 9/10.
Durability: The Curry 3 should be a durable shoe, the outsole is hard and the materials were made to be super strong and durable. The Sole Brothers give the Curry 3 a rating of 9/10.
Aesthetics: Sammy said that this shoe has grown on him since he first saw it and says that they are dope, but Don and myself agree that this is a hideous shoe. The silhouette looks squarish and it simply looks like a boot rather than a basketball shoe. The black out colorway is the best looking one since it hides most of the hideousness of this shoe. Sammy gave this a rating of 9/10 on our scorecard, but I am making an executive decision to give it a rating of 4/10 for aesthetics.
The Under Armour Curry 3 in a size 8 weighs in at 12.87 ounces, which if Sammy gets a pair in his correct size shouldn’t be very different than the Curry 2. The Curry 3 feels very light on the foot and quite minimal. Under Armour is selling this shoe at retail for $140 which is a $10 increase over last year’s model and a $5 increase over the Curry 2.5. Sammy enjoyed the Curry 3 overall, but was disappointed in the traction and fit, if those had been better, this would have been a great shoe rather than simply a good shoe. Let us know what you think in the comments and be sure to check out our scorecard and Don and Sammy’s discussion on the Curry 3 below.