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Zoom HyperRev vs. Roshe Run: One of These is a Lot Like the Other

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One of these shoes is not like the other…or are they?

The Nike Zoom HyperRev and the Nike Roshe Run are two silhouettes that not many would consider to be the same. One is a $140 basketball shoe, the other is a $70 running shoe. The HyperRev is a performance driven shoe that is designed solely for the court. While the Roshe Run is considered a running shoe, it is really more of a lifestyle product inspired by running.

What brings these two shoes together is their simplistic approach to construction.

Both feature an upper with minimal overlays, which allows for the shoe to function as one. When you rely on overlays to provide better fit, what results are pieces that tend to float on top of another depending on their construction, which leads to support going in multiple directions. So basically the pieces are fighting with one another. But because each shoe was treated as an exercise in material exploration, the design team was able to create two products that flowed around the foot and took shape to each individual user.

To me, the most common aesthetic feature that the two share is the incredibly clean midsole. The Roshe Run is nearly two years old at this point, and when it first dropped, it was widely seen as a plush product that conforms to your foot. While the upper plays a key role in that, it was hard to argue that the midsole provided the best feel of the shoe.

The Roshe midsole is injected, molded from Ground-Contact EVA, meaning that rubber is not needed on the bottom of the shoe to provide traction or durability because the EVA is strong enough to absorb the environment. To provide a high level of comfort, a molded Phylon sockliner runs the full-length of the shoe internally.

While I can’t prove it, I would not be shocked if the midsole construction of the Roshe is what kicked off and inspired the entire HyperRev creation. Instead of using Ground-Contact EVA, the midsole is constructed out of Phylon. What is unique about Phylon is its tolerance to the other materials that make up the midsole.

The rubber runs full-length heel to toe, and it is nestled in so perfectly with the Phylon that it is nearly seamless. Which is not an easy task to accomplish. This feature allows you to be closer to the court for better traction and feel, much like the Ground-Contact EVA on the Roshe.

Similar to the Roshe, there is a second durometer of cushioning. Since the HyperRev is already using Phylon as the full-length cushioning, Nike chose to move it up another notch by encapsulating Zoom Air in it. This provides lightweight absorption while still being minimal. Much like the overall premise of the Roshe.

One of the last key features the two share is the collar. But how, you ask? One has a strap and is disconnected from the tongue, while the other is a low top – this makes no sense, you say. Well if you think of the nature of each shoe, and what they are trying to accomplish, they both function the exact same.

The heel for each shoe is the only area that is molded in the upper. The reason it is molded is to provide a secure fit. While one is a low and the other is a mid, both of their collar shapes are crafted to flow around the foot. The idea is to be as ergonomic as possible.

The upper constructions are quite similar as well. The Roshe features a full-length gusseted tongue and so does the HyperRev, just in a more expensive fashion. This, combined with the molded collar, creates a lockdown fit in the simplest way possible.

While these shoes are definitely visually not like the other, they are one in the same in nature. Both were created off of the key principal that simpler is better. The more pure the design, the more functional during performance.

In the end, one of these shoes is a lot like the other.

Other posts by Brett Golliff:

Brett Golliff, footwear extraordinaire, is founder of BrettGolliff.com, contributor for Complex, and has previously designed for New Balance. Check him out on Twitter and Instagram.