New Balance Kawhi 2 Review 2023

Here is the summary of the New Balance Kawhi 2 Review. For a detailed review, continue reading!

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Fit & Lock


Outdoor & Durability




User Reviews


Expert Reviews


Our Verdict

Best for outdoors

New balance Kwhi 2 has a great balance of fit and stability. These are lightweight on feet and provide super impact protection. The traction might pick up dust but does the job well. These are nice all-around shoes in every aspect.

Facts & Specs

Size: Slim fit (snug) | Weight: 326g | Top: High-top | Lockdown: Lace-up | Midsole: Full-length Fuel cell technology | Material: Fit weave Lite


  • Attractive colors
  • Great Traction for quick movements
  • Highest stability in the forefoot
  • Lightweight
  • Breathable material
  • Lateral stability
  • Firm and great cushion
  • Best for outdoors


  • It’s got a weird grip.
  • Low impact protection

Detailed New Balance Kawhi 2 Review

The New Balance Kawhi ii is the signature shoe of Kawhi Leonard. It’s one of the outstanding performance shoes from New Balance.

The design highlight is its super similarity with the 100$ bill. Also, the tongue of the sneakers has 100 prints that are weird yet unique.

New balance Kawhi 2 is much appreciated in terms of durability and outdoor stability.

We need to check out if the shoe really fits the standards for a performance basketball shoe for outdoor as well as indoor use.

Let’s give you a complete insight to help you decide if these are really one of the best performance shoes of 2023.

Related: Top 10 Best Outdoor Basketball Shoes


The traction pattern on the New Balance Kawhi ii is another level. Its outsole from the top and bottom has a translucent rubber outsole. But the midsole has some deep grooves rubber outsole.

The rubber on the outsole really bites on the floor. A nice mix of translucent and groovy outsole tread gets a great grip on the floor. It does not slip at all. 

Even on the dusty courts, the outsoles may need a little wiping from time to time. But the overall stability and traction pattern remain un halted for as long as you use the shoe.

New balance kawhi ii traction has absolutely no issue on the indoor surface, and on the outdoor, the outsole may pick up a little dust. Which is super easy to clean. New balance kawhi ii has aggressive traction.


The cushion in the New Balance Kawhi ii is a full-length fuel cell technology. The cushion setup in the heel gives little compression. It provides just enough rebound back.

It’s definitely not hard as its predecessor’s new balance kawhi 1. It is softer on the outsole and responsive. The cushion in the heel and forefoot is nicely balanced to provide impact protection and a court feel.

The tongue area is also nicely padded. 

The comfort and cushioning are alright but it’s not so great to call it super soft. Impact protection is not so great.

However, it’s low to the ground for its minimal cushioning, so it gives a great court feel. Overall the cushioning setup is just nice.


The New Balance Kawhi 2 uses Fit Weave lite material. It’s a synthetic mesh-like material. It’s really very light. 

The upper materials are woven nicely to enhance durability. 

The inner of the shoe uses a textile material. The upper toe box guard has a layer of synthetic mesh running underneath. 

The material is flexible and takes minimal time to break in time

the back half has a nice fuse overlay. The tongue has a nice amount of padding but it’s kept minimal to ensure breathability. Overall the material is lightweight and looks great.


The new balance Kawhi 2 is a high-top solid performer shoe. It’s a perception that high-top shoe aid in ankle protection. The shoe has a really high ankle collar. It nicely supports the Achilles area. 

The shoe heel cup is nicely fitting for good heel lockdown. It provides a good amount of lateral support and lockdown your ankle in place. it has a traditional lacing system.

The shoe support is really something we need in a performance basketball shoe. It holds your foot in place. We did not see any issue with stability in outdoor and indoor courts.

Being a high-top shoe, the ankle mobility is not reduced, the flexible ankle collar allows rapid turns easily thus giving more support.


The new balance kawhi ii is snug fit. That’s good news for narrow-foot players. But it’s recommended to go a half size up if you have a wide foot.

The side of the shoe has a pattern like fingers holding the shoe. This design has really improved the grip on the mid-foot area. Both sides also have a rubber caging to make it even fitter. 

So the fit is so supportive and provides great stability.

Looks/ Appearance/ Colorways: 

The New Balance kawhi ii is out in many attractive colorways. The shoe back has a gold caging that aids in ankle support. It gives a premium look to the sneakers.

New balance kawhi Colorways include ocean blue, black and white, silver, cotton white, kawhi goosebumps, etc.

It’s intriguing, stylish, and classy.


An outdoor shoe needs to have some outstanding traction pattern.

Added to that, they must last a couple of seasons. 

The New Balance kawhi 2 tractions is very strong. It’s definitely gripping on the floor. it offers impact protection. However occasional or very little wiping of the outsole will maintain its aggressive traction pattern.

The New Balance Kawhi ii has a thick rubber outsole, it may feel hard on the feet because cushioning setup is not so great. 

But it’s definitely made to last longer on outdoor concrete surfaces. The shoes are great for playing outdoors.

Check: Best Basketball Shoes For Flat Feet


Although the material is lightweight in new balance kawhi ii. The mesh synthetic material has no holes in it. Which tells that it is not that breathable. 

However, the material is so light. The padding on the tongue is also minimum. So combined with the little padding and the light mesh material, ventilation will be just fine.

That even without holes in the mesh, your feet would not get so much heated up.


The durability of the new balance kawhi ii sneakers is checked both for the outsole and its upper.

The upper of the shoe has thin mesh material which is light yet durable. It has a toe cap guard that is made up of some other material. 

The Toe guard also has mesh lining running beneath it.

The outsole translucent rubber is pretty much thick. It is stable on slippery and dusty surfaces. The rubber outsole groves are very durable. its a very aggressive traction outsole. 

The shoes are highly recommended for outdoor use, as these are durable and definitely won’t tear out sooner.

User Review:

The user review of the new balance kawhi ii is 5 out of 5. Kawhi Leonard signature shoes are much appreciated for its stability and durability, especially on outdoor surfaces.

Expert Review


“This shoe is very breathable and more pliable without putting in jeopardy the shoe’s ability to provide amazing foot containment. The traction is also noteworthy as it does not falter even if there is dust on the court.”


“The KAWHI ii keeps the biting traction of the KAWHI ii and adds comfort, stability, and durability. These are versatile for positionless play”


“The cushioning is improved and softer than Kawhi 1 and beating Nike AIR Max, however, these are almost one of the best shoes of the year”


“Kwahi 2 has put up really nice shoe in 160$ price range. It is softer and upgrades from kawhi 1. overall its a solid shoe”

5-Sole brothers:

“Ttraction is nice but could have been better, also the cushion could be improved, lateral stability is so good, overall solid shoe.”

6-RunStretch Tech

“The breathability could have been better. The shoe look is very sleek and nice, stability and durability are great. So these are good outdoor shoes.”

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