This is my review of Under Armour Curry 3Zero. The 3Zero is an excellent, affordable model from Under Armour that mixes amazing traction and a lightweight design at the expense of some impact protection and long-term durability.
- Where to Buy: Amazon
- Best for: Players who want a lightweight option that won’t break the bank. Guards who need a mobile, out-of-the-way sneaker.
- Pros: Excellent traction. Lightweight shell and open, mobile design. Good lockdown and support. Affordable.
- Cons: Cushioning is a bit firm, especially in the sole. Lacks a bit of durability. Not a true outdoor option.
- Alternatives: Zoom Freak 2, Puma Clyde Hardwood, Lockdown 5
Why Trust Me
I’ve tried just about every basketball shoe and style in my twenty five plus years playing the game. As such, I know what traits work for what environments, as well as what characteristics to look for when getting new sneakers.
Those years and years of personal experience gave me a backdrop to properly review the Curry 3Zero. I then backed up my knowledge with extensive reviews and in-depth research to compile the following sections.
The Curry 3Zero is a pure lightweight shoe. It’s extremely responsive and promotes agility. That means it’s best suited for guards and wings. While big men can make use of it, the lack of solid impact protection does hurt a bit for those who like to go up and pull down rebounds.
The shoe has some of the best traction on the market, excels when it comes to general performance, and feels great. If comfort and support matter to you, it will provide you with some of the best results on the market.
The 3Zero’s cushion is clearly not the shoe’s primary focus. That doesn’t mean it’s bad. Rather, it just won’t match up to other high-end options with more padding. It has a solid court feel and the base ensures your foot stays comfortable when you run or sprint on the hardwood.
The synthetic leather upper is worth a special mention, as its soft construction feels great and allows for ample flexibility. The shoe comes with a fantastic fit and breaks in right away.
The Micro-G cushioning does its job, but it’s also a bit stiff. That can lead to some harder landings than some would like. That leads to a lack of bounce too. There’s also a lack of impact protection, which can be a problem for larger players who need a stronger base.
This shoe has great responsiveness too. The model is all about allowing you to make good moves and improving your on-court performance. All parts of the sneaker, from the light design to the grippy traction and responsive sole, do exactly that.
Many modern guard shoes push responsiveness without properly backing it with other key traits. That’s not the case here. The Curry 3Zero lets you stop on a dime, break into a full sprint, and go from standing to jumping in no time at all. They work with you rather than hold you back.
It should come as no surprise that durability is another area where the 3Zero doesn’t quite excel. You’re never going to expect excellent longevity with a lighter sneaker, and that’s the case here. The materials are by no means bad, but don’t expect a lot of toughness.
If you’re an outdoor player who balls in rough weather, or if you’re someone who regularly puts their sneakers through a lot of abuse, you should expect the 3Zero to break down much more quickly than your other shoes.
Lockdown and Support
One fantastic aspect of the shoe is the lockdown. Support in a lightweight model is not something you normally see, especially when dealing with sneakers aimed at guards. However, the 3Zero does a great job of protecting your foot through lockdown and lateral containment.
There’s no heel slippage in this shoe, nor is there any forefoot movement. Both of those are extremely impressive, giving you a large amount of protection, support, and comfort.
Backing that is the lateral outrigging, which gives you a ton of stability when you’re low to the ground or making great cuts. There’s not a lot of extra interior room in this shoe, which creates an incredibly snug and secure fit.
Traction is another area where the 3Zero knocks it out of the park. There are many solid sneakers that, despite their premium traits, need to be wiped down a lot. You won’t have any such issues with this pair, as their grip holds up on both clean and dusty courts.
The outsole works thanks to the mix of powerful rubber construction and special herringbone pattern. Both play off each other in a way that lets you really dig into the court, which furthers the responsiveness and brings another level to your overall performance.
What I Like
My favorite part of the 3Zero is the amazing support. Injury prevention is something a lot of premium sneakers overlook, but most shoes in the Curry line protect your ankle and heel. That’s the case here, with the strong lockdown holding everything together without any issues.
The traction is great too. It seems that many current shoes slide around on dusty or outdoor courts. I found it refreshing to find a newer model that can really dig into any surface. If stopping quickly is essential to your game, you’ll absolutely love the 3Zero’s outsole design.
What I Dislike
There’s a lot of things to like about the 3zero, but know that there’s not a lot of impact protection. The shoes, while comfortable, are much sleeker than they are durable. As such, you will definitely feel it when you come down hard from a high-flying play.
It should come as no surprise that the durability is not up to snuff with these, but I am also disappointed how poorly they hold up outdoors. I love the versatility of being able to play on different surfaces, and losing some strength on the blacktop is a bummer.
If you’re someone who likes the 3Zero but wants something a bit different, the following shoes are excellent choices.
1. Zoom Freak 2
The Zoom Freak 2 is the perfect choice for players who want a lightweight shoe that’s a little more responsive than the 3Zero. This model comes with plenty of lockdown and cushion, but goes above and beyond in terms of mobility, agility, and general performance.
The shoe doesn’t have the cleanest look, but in terms of characteristics it excels. The sneaker is lightweight and the Zoom Air Technology provides plenty of spring and cushion at the same time. It’s even tough, giving you a layer of durability many similar models lack.
Read our detailed Zoom Freak 2 review for more information.
The Clyde Hardwood is a responsive shoe with a lot of midfoot support and an old-school look. The unique design is focused on performance, which is reinforced by the comfortable design and special forefoot webbing. It locks your foot in place and stabilizes it extremely well.
In that way, the Hardwood serves as a tough-but-springy base that you can use to jump and run. They definitely don’t have the style or look for everyone, but if you want something that breaks the mold without losing features, the Hardwood is a solid option.
3. Lockdown 5
The Lockdown 5, like the 3Zero, is a lightweight Under Armour shoe with good construction and a well-rounded design. Rather than focusing on one specific area, there’s almost no area where it comes up short. It’s comfortable, responsive, protective, supportive, and stylish.
In fact, the only lasting issue is the fit, which can be a bit small for players with wide or particularly large feet. As long as you know to get a half-size up, there’s very little not to like or enjoy about what the Lockdown 5 brings to the table.
How Does the 3Zero Fit?
The shoe is true to size, meaning that you won’t have any issues buying it at your regular shoe size.
Is This Good for Outdoor Use?
Unfortunately, the 3Zero isn’t the best outdoor option on the market. You can use it outside, but it’s much better inside a gym.
Is the 3Zero Supportive?
Yes. The 3Zero has excellent lockdown and a tight fit to ensure your foot or ankle never takes an unfortunate twist while you play.
The Curry 3Zero is a solid shoe at an affordable price. While not strictly aimed for bigger players, the unobtrusive design, lightweight feel, and excellent lockdown make it a solid choice for just about every type of player regardless of their position or level.
If you’re in the market for a lightweight shoe that stays supportive and comfortable, it’s a good pick. Those who need a solid option that won’t break the bank will enjoy it as well.