This page shows examples with the Nikon D4 using the Leica 180mm f/2.8 APO-Elmarit-R, easily the highest performing ~200mm lens available for Nikon. I bought my 180/2.8 APO some years ago, and had it converted to Nikon mount using a Leitax lens adapter.
How hard is it to use a manual focus 180mm lens for moving targets?
Pretty darn hard. This page shows both hits and misses.
Compared to the Nikon 200mm f/2 VR II
My recommendation would be to use the Leica 180/2.8 APO for static or slow-moving subjects, particularly on the tripod, where its outstanding image quality can be utilized fully.
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Since 2006, Diglloyd Advanced Photography is the authoritative review and reference for DSLRs and their lenses: Canon and Nikon primarily, but also Pentax and some medium format. Reviews of key DSLRs are included, but the primary focus is on lens performance. Also included is a wealth of technique and workflow approaches.
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