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AIR JORDAN 20 Performance Review

By far there are lots of excellent products in the AIR JORDAN series and from my point of view, the AIR JORDAN 20 is the best of the series that Nike has presented to its fans. In fact, the AIR JORDAN 20 is more than just a pair of basketball shoes. It’s also a piece of art as well as a database of all the JORDAN’s glory in the past.

So with great tribute for it, I bought the sneaker 2 months ago and right now I’ve got some knowledge of it. Hence presenting to you my AIR JORDAN 20 performance review which I hope may do some help for you when you are making decisions.

Let’s get started.

Fit and comfort

True to size or should you deviate from your usual choice? How comfy are these? Initially I did have concerns about the sizing problem, thinking that the wide last might not suit very well my relatively thin

Inside the shoe there’s the so-called one-bootie design, making the footbed not so wide as it looks. But could it be a bother for wide footers? Well, hardly the scenario! Because of the wide design of the shoe, it is more than suitable even for wearers with super wide feet. Simply put, the shoe is made to suit the great masses rather than the minority. So you can still find the right size for your feet even if you think you’ve got special foot type.

In a word, they look as well as feel very snug and compact. For those regular/narrow footers, going true to size will be fine and they can still expect a snug, near one-to-one fit. As for wide footers, going up half a size should be better, but how good or suitable it can be depends on how wide your feet are of course.

Over and above that, the eye-catching wide strip on the vamp is thought by some for improving wrapping, but surprisingly, it is less effective in practice. For the ankle straps, they make me feel uncomfortable and though I can leave them loose during daily wearings, they are a big bane for me when I am exercising. So I don’t actually like the setup.

Cushion

The working principle of I.P.S. seems to be similar to that of SHOX. Inside the midsole of AJ20, there are 20 elastic columns embedded which are placed according to ergonomic principles. Sounds quite novel and a lot of people would even think it as a brilliant new tech.

For all that, its performance on court is what really matters. During my plays, the feelings offered to me by the I.P.S. was the kind between Zoom-Air and air-sole. And since I am not heavy, I feel very comfortable in it both during jumping and landing.

Unlike other cushion setups, there’s no need for me to take a couple of sessions to really feel the I.P.S.’s full potential. It seems things just get awesome at the very beginning. In short, this is a super well-balanced setup that are fantastic for just about anyone.

Thanks to the generous energy return from the setup, I can also enjoy the stellar impact protection and absorption. And since the forefoot area is lower to the ground, I think it would be very agreeable for players who seek to improve their pace on courts.

Protection

In the AJ20, JORDAN BRAND has used a technology called Ankle Strap, which is one of the distinctive features of the AJ20, but also a hassle in practice. At the beginning, I tied the strap directly to the ankle, which made me feel very uncomfortable and seemed to have no protection at all. But later, I learned the correct way to use the strap through the instructions on the shoe box and things improved a lot then.

The strap is connected to the body by a small sticky clasp on the tongue. After doing so, I could obviously feel the security offered by the shoes, though it has yet to be ideal. But it’s a bit frustrating that even when I’ve got it right, I still have to struggle to put on the shoes , and it takes several adjustments to get the straps in the right place. Besides, the straps also chafed the ankle a little bit during the initial wearings, but with longer socks I can easily get rid of the problem

While the I.P.S system itself provides good torsion resistance and support, the AJ20 has also a carbon plate in the midsole to enhance its torsion resistance, according to the detailed information on the shoe box.

As for the outsole, it feels good and its infield performance is very nice at the meantime, which actually surprises me a great deal. Nevertheless, it would be a bit unbearable to play in it on the outfield because you’ll find it wear away easily.

Court feel

The midsole of the shoe is thin, and the insole is right on top of the I.P.S system, so this gives me a nice sense of court. But compared with the zoom-air, the cushion system of this one feels a bit slower during forefoot startup, which may be attributed to I.P.S.’s similar working principle to that of SHOX and its being made too soft.

Traction

Based on my experience, I can ensure you that the grip of the AIR JORDAN 20 is very good. I usually play on indoor courts and even if the wooden floor is dirty, I don’t worry about grip at all.

Before I put on the shoes, I noticed that the AIR JORDAN 20 has 10 protruding dots on each outsole. When I wear the AIR JORDAN 20, I feel that both feet are stepping on these 10 dots, rather than the whole outsole. The floor was dirty that day, but that causes no barrier to the grip provided by the AIR JORDAN 20, and therefore I am able to stop wherever I wanted.

Weight

The AIR JORDAN 20 is actually lightweight despite the chunky appearance. Although the thick outsole makes it look clunky, the AIR JORDAN 20 is fairly light and if you ever get a chance to play in it, you’ll know clearly what I am talking about.

Overall:

Two months are definitely not enough to get full knowledge of a sneaker. So more information and try-on would be best for you if you are right now considering buying the shoes.

To sum up, this review, hopefully, can be of some avail for you. As I mentioned earlier, the sneaker is not only a pair of sneaker, but also a work of art and a database of JORDAN’s past glory days. So, depending on what you want from it, be it the shoes’ commemorative property or their performances, you may decide whether it is your thing.

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AJ35 Low Performance Review

Want a pair of brilliant sneaker with outstanding or eye-catching appearance? Well, if that’s what you’re all about, the odds are that you’re gonna find this AJ35 Low review after your own heart. Along with a few other pairs of sneakers, I’ve played hooping and shooting in these for quite  a couple of months, maybe 6 months heretofore, on indoor hardwood mostly. At first when I got the shoes, I was rather electrified and did jam a few sessions on the concrete and blacktop, but shortly after that, I was dissuaded from doing that because of the relatively poor durability.

Here I wanna break down the shoes for a better perspective, hoping that you may find some helpful references and see whether these are born for you. So let’s not waste any more time and dive right into the core parts.

Vamp

How do the vamp materials perform on-court? Are they comfort-wise?

The AJ35 Low features leather splicing fabric all throughout the vamp. To be frank with you, I could not at first judge from the surface whether it wrapped well or not, but my experience later told me that the the vamp wrapping was quite good and impressive. To make it more explicit, let me put it this way.

While I was playing on court, the vamp materials moved really well with my feet. Since I am a bit of a wide footer, there’s no more room left for my toes and the last is neither too wide nor too narrow, just right to the point. With these I feel there’s plenty of forefoot flex upon each stride and my gait is nicely propelled forward. Over and above that, with the relatively thick and solid vamp materials, the foot containment is also solid for me and I never run into such issues as side movement or rolling out of the footbed.

As for the heel areas there’s also plenty of padding so that my feet sit rather comfortably inside the shoes. So I really can say that the overall lockdown the shoe provides is excellent. Comfort-wise, definitely!

Support

How much support does the vamp offer then?

In terms of the support,  I can’t say that I have any major complaints of it. Since the vamp materials are hard enough, I can assured you that you’ll rarely find issues with security, as is the case for most of AJ shoes.

Whenever I stop suddenly or make lateral movement on court they always hold my feet well without letting my feet slip out of the footbed. While ensuring the possible maximum stability for players, these also keep them as quick and mobile as possible. Besides that, the lacing system works very well, though there’s nothing new about it, which surely offers a reliable sense of security.

In a word, there’s really nothing to complain about in this respect. A top-tier performance! No other way to put it.

Midsole

A large zoom sits in the forefoot area while a horseshoe-like zoom accompanies the heel portion. Not so impressive, definitely. But we all know it’s unwise to judge by appearance. So how does it perform on earth?

In fact, it did take me a couple of sessions to really start feeling this setup’s full potential. At first I could not even feel its existence, but after some time’s going on with it, I’d say the energy return properties it offers is really powerful and wonderful. During startup the feedback from the forefoot propels me forward quite forcefully so that I feel I’ve got somewhat addicted to such feelings.

The forefoot and midfoot areas both feel lower to the ground and faster. And along with the wonderful forefoot energy return, the overall heel-to-toe stride just feels ultra-smooth, which sounds very inviting, especially for those with explosiveness style.

As for the heel area, the zoom there cannot be felt obviously, and if you happen to be the type of player who play on the heels a lot and are also a lighter one, it may be a bit insufficient for use because you cannot even feel it there. But if you are a heavier player, you will then feel  compression. Nevertheless, for me who weigh about 80kg, this is still far from my ideal and no match for Air cushion that is empowered with great potential.

For all that, I can’t say it is awful and lacks impact protection or absorption, just not so that satisfying as its forefoot counterpart.

Overall, if you look after a very responsive ride that’s low to the ground, ultra-stable, and agile and haven’t high requirements for heel cushion performance, this setup may turn out to be as good as you’re going to get.

Traction

Does it bite multiple surfaces well?  How long will the outsoles last?

Nowadays its’ nothing new for sneakers to adopt herringbone pattern in their outsoles. But common as it is, I can’t deny its excellence. It actually comes up medially and laterally at the forefoot and heel area, offering the reliable bite in as many directions as possible, or accommodating quick changes of direction.

As is mentioned earlier, I’ve only played in it on outdoor courts for several times, in spite of the fact that I am a big advocate of outdoor playing. The reason behind this is that after several high-intensity plays, I found that there appeared some obvious damages in the high-use areas of my shoes. Since I value my shoes a great deal, such severe damages are definitely intolerable in my eyes and I had to turn to indoor smooth courts as a result.

Nevertheless, let me still talk a bit about its outdoor performance. Although its traction can still deal with abrasive surfaces, you cannot expect it to last very long. Rubber or concrete, if my memories serve me well, I barely had any issues with it and therefore never slid all over the place. It was always consistent, which I can ensure you.

What about the indoor performance then? Well, it seems like the outsole should still offer excellent traction just as it does outdoors. But, buddy, I hate to break it to you that the indoor performance is a bit inferior if you want the kind of god-like traction.

If , however, without comparison, I find the traction still more than satisfactory on indoor courts. On the hardwood floors mostly, the bite is just impressive and even a cynic cannot find fault with it. Nonetheless, when dust creeps into the pattern, that will be another story. With the dust or debris there, I obviously feel a decrease in responsiveness and the traction will therefore become inconsistent. The best way to make up for this is to wipe the outsoles off carefully, which will do great help. After all, we can’t afford to stop and wipe the outsole every few minutes on courts. That’s surely impractical.

On top of that, I feel the shoes are overall too stiff, and its anti-rollover and anti-torsion, on the other hand, are excellent because of this. However, there’s also a trade-off. The hard materials have also resulted in a little inflexibility, which makes the shoes very suitable for heavy guards.

Overall

The AJ 35 Low is an ultimate low-profile shoe for small and big forwards and heavy guards as well. Of the many AJ sneakers, I think this one is definitely an excellent one.

As for the widely complained problem, the arch area rising up a bit which causes discomfort to the foot, I have not encountered such a bane. But here it should be mentioned that for flat footers, it is best to try the shoes on so that such hassle or discomfort can be avoided.

Overall, this is a pair of good actual combat shoes, and as long as it suits you, it can be said as one of the best for you.

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Air Jordan 36 Performance Review

What’s the powerful and forceful “combat weapon” in your memory? Is it comfortable in all portions? Is it satisfying in all respects? Well, there must be at least one answer in your mind. And when asked to give my own answer, I’d say some models of the AJ series which, after all, basically offers the TOP sneakers of the year all the time. Then what about today’s protagonist, the Air Jordan 36? Well, buddy, I should say that it is a mixed blessing.

Frankly speaking, AJ36 is really a pair of shoes with disadvantages and obvious advantages. Why my saying so? Yep! While the advantages can be very obvious , the negative ones, however, are mainly some hidden safety problems and basically require further thinking and detection to be found. But let’s waste no more time and dive right into my long-term-based(about 10 months) Air Jordan 36 performance review.

Fit and comfort

Sizing guide

From the shoes’ sizes alone, you can feel their upgrades by the brand. These are actually a bit particular because they can offer you the best and comfortable experience only when you’ve picked up your most suitable size. Otherwise, you are most likely to run into a lot of discomfort. Unlike other AJ shoes I’ve worn before, even if I copped a bigger size, I could still make up for it by turning to thick socks or anything the like. For AJ 36, however, I couldn’t have enjoyed its super nice comfort had I not been to the stores and tried them on in the flesh.

For those with high insteps, wide feet and flat feet, they definitely cannot go true to size because their regular sizes here will only make them suffer a lot of discomfort. Therefore, it’s recommended here to actually try on and adjust their regular sizes to either bigger or smaller ones.

And for the normal footers, the pressure on their insteps will be very obvious. Without wearing thick socks, they’ll find their little toes hard pressed at the beginning. So, again, the suggestion is to have a try in person.

Nevertheless, for those of you with thin feet, you’re relieved of the hassle of trying on because you’ll find it more than suitable to go with your regular sizes, maybe even to the point of perfect. As for me who is a wide footer, now that I’ve picked up the right size, I haven’t had any slippage inside the shoes so far and length-wise, things were perfect, so we’re good there.

Comfort

As is mentioned above, whether the shoes are comfortable to wear depends on whether you’ve chosen the right sizes. From my perspective, things are solid comfort-wise. This is no exaggeration, buddy!

Inside the “walls”, there’s plenty of smooth and soft padding, not least around the ankle & heel areas. With the big heel pull tab there, they are made super easy to put on. Over and above that, with the shoe’s smooth finish, I am enabled to slide in nicely with all manner of performance socks.

In conclusion, AJ 36 is a package that’s compact and super comfortable providing that you’ve chosen the right size. Quite right to the point!

Wrapping

The vamp support and wrapping of the whole pair can surely be hailed as top-ranking. Although the vamp deforms obviously while I was making lateral movements, the awesome part here is that I could still feel my feet firmly locked inside. In other words, the vamp can hold my feet super well. Not a bit of slippage, I can assure you! Simply put, the extension and deformation of the vamp will not make you feel that your feet are out of control.

However, the vamp is not capable of controlling its own deformation, bringing on possible or hidden dangers that cannot be felt during plays. For players who are heavier&bigger, the weak strength in the legs or ankles will further result in increasing the risks of hidden dangers. Hence some necessary protection measures here.

Midsole

A Zoom sits in the forefoot area while the Zoom Stroble accompanies the whole soles. Sounds impressive and many people will even regard it as a hardcore setup. So what is the truth on earth? Let me share with you my detailed thoughts.

Objectively speaking, it is actually a hardcore and fairly standard setup. The superposition of the air cushion in the forefoot can not only bring players a very good foot feel and court sense, but also offer wonderful energy return properties.

Nonetheless, it should be mentioned that the forefoot cushion is really that terrific for players with sufficient strength underfoot, but for those with relatively weak strength, they cannot fully experience the nice rebound from it but rather the slight rebound from the upper Zoom Stroble.

For heavier and bigger players, however, the energy return of the forefoot can also be inconsistent because the overall air pressure of Zoom Stroble is not as good as that of large Zoom. Of course, this has also something to do with the foams there. So how good the cushion is actually depends on what you want from it.

Someday I also found that after removing the insoles, the forefoot would become far tougher, which could be obviously felt. Therefore, such special insoles for the shoes are indeed very essential, from which I can get a glimpse of the originality of the brand.

The heel portion is a bit stiffer than the front since it only features a layer of cushion. For me who weighs 80kg, the heel cushion is a bit insufficient for court use while some of my friend who weighs 90kg can receive some feedback fro it. In spite of that, I cannot say the heel cushion falls short of impact protection or a proper heel-to-toe transition. Both are there. It’s just the actual feel is more subdued when compared to the forefoot.

Traction

As of today I don’t have any complaints about the shoes’ traction. The outsole, once again, features the herringbone grains that are basically reliable. In fact, the herringbone is an old hat because it is widely used in the AJ sneakers, from which we can tell that the pattern is really widely enjoyed and powerful.

 

For the traction of this one, based on my personal experiences, it is very nice and is never too much. Thanks to this, I never end up slightly slipping out on a stop, cut, or change of direction.

On indoor courts, I sometimes play on the smooth hardwood floor provided by some indoor stadium in my neighborhood. It is always clean though, it is not suitable for this one. Though the traction is basically fine there, it hasn’t reached the ideal level I want. The number of slight slip-outs, as I had expected, are occasional.

Personally, I prefer outdoor courts because the outfield offers broader vision. Although the outsole lacks a strong and ideal bite indoors, it makes up for that outdoors for the concrete surfaces definitely provide far more friction so that the bite is rather healthy and aggressive.

I deem that I cannot notice better traction on a concrete surface court in any other AJ sneakers released in 2021, though that doesn’t rule out my lack of experiencing enough number of sneakers. Despite that, I do read that people are having more consistent experiences with that shoe in terms of traction.

Overall

There are some amazing aspects on this AJ 36, such as the last, the vamp wrapping, the application of new vamp materials as well as the ultra-lightweight mid-sole technology which  means less energy expenditure.

The Air Jordan 36 is an ultimate low-profile shoe with both advantages and disadvantages. For the most of you, however, I deem that you might as well think twice before taking action. After all, in spite of the inviting advantages in the shoes, its shortcomings cannot be ignored. That is the security problems might result in possible injuries if there are not any precautions.

All in all, the best method to figure out whether this is your thing is to try them on in person. After all, my experience and thoughts here are only for your reference and the final decision is yours.

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Air Jordan 11 Concord Performance Review

It’s almost been two seasons ever since I’ve been excited about this Air Jordan hoop shoe, the AJ11. Now that the big question here is whether the shoes will work well on court, I feel quite delighted to share with you my personal experiences with these. And since two seasons are enough to get intimate knowledge of the shoes, I’m gonna present to you my Air Jordan 11 performance review at length.

It’s safe to say that the AJ11 can definitely be regarded as a very classic shoe in the AJ series and the protagonist of today, the AJ 11 Concord, is also a classic colorway of the classic sneaker. Though beckoned by its simple yet nice-looking appearance at first, I became all the more infatuated with its performances. So how well does it perform on court after all? For the masses, is it a HIT or MISS? Here lie the answers!

The Build

What are the vamp materials and how well they’re made? What about build quality & long-term reliability?

The vamp utilizes black patent leather material without any soft mesh or fabric materials to make it better fit the feet, making it not so friendly to players’ insteps during the first several rounds. In spite of that, judging from my experience, the longer you play in it, the securer you’ll also feel in it because the leather vamp, on the other hand, is hard enough to offer sufficient protection.

But it is also crystal clear that the leather vamp won’t be impressive in air permeability. Indeed, the breathability is very poor, practically nil. Since I don’t have a big sweating problem I don’t really care much about this. Nevertheless, if your skin sweats fast, you’ll probably feel it a bit with these.

As for its wrapping performance, buddy, you might not expect too much of it. To be frank, I’d previously heard from some reviewers that the vamp wrapping had failed them, though not to the point of unplayable. From my perspective, the wrapping is not surprising, but not that bad, either. Before tightening the laces, there’s still room above the insteps. But as long as you tighten the laces, some qualitative change will take place: you’ll only feel that your feet are firmly locked in the footbed, which makes you feel like the two have integrated into one.

Being a middle-top sneaker though, it also locks my ankles quite well, providing a sense of security for me who have ankle injury. With that I can just play to my heart’s content and put to good use my athletic performance.

 

Support

How much all-around support does the sneaker offer? Then what about lateral stability and foot containment?

We all know that a sneaker’s support matters a great deal because it helps avoid potential injuries for us. Then what kind of support can be said to be qualified for on-court use? Well, if you’ve had experience with one of the successful Harden releases, such as the 3rd, you’ll know what a good, supportive sneaker is like. Although the support of the AJ 11 is not a patch on that of the Harden shoes, AJ 11 is capable of overwhelming many sneakers on the current market in this respect.

In fact, while I was making breakthroughs or changing directions, the support features are in place and the vamp simply holds my foot in place nicely and as a result I don’t see any apparent restrictions there. The ankle & heel lockdown, and foam sidewalls medially and laterally to keep the foot in place, I think, can satisfy most hoopers.

Cushion

How good can the impact absorption be ? What about the ride height and comfort?

The AJ 11 features a full-foot Air Sole which sounds good, if not outstanding. Well, on paper that is. But in reality, it may be worse than that, and I personally dislike this setup.

For players like me, heavier and bigger, with a weight of over 80kg, the setup is definitely insufficient for use. Actually, it took me quite a couple of sessions to begin feeling the little energy feedback of the cushion. Afterwards, although the Air Sole did fully break in and start working to its full potential, I still felt the whole sole was stiff and I could feel its a-bit-increased energy feedback only when I was landing.

Surely I cannot say it utterly falls short of impact protection or a proper heel-to-toe transition, but, though both are there, one cannot expect them to be excellent.

The forefoot and midsole areas both feel a bit low to the ground. And visually, there’s no much difference in how the heel feels vs. the forefoot and it just turns out to be the case. The overall cushion is well balanced and stable, every nook and cranny. Yep! You read that right!

Certainly for quite a number of players, this setup is not enough for them to use, but what’s a bad thing for one may be beneficial to another. For those who are close to the explosiveness or the style of Westbrook, these shoes would be quite a blessing. Although I cannot fully experience its good because of my weight, it would be more than agreeable for guards with small weights and those forwards. According to some of my friends who are lighter players, they really appreciate the comfortable and secure experience cushion-wise.

Once again, the cushion won’t be good for everyone. Depending on your personal situations and needs, I’ll leave it for you to decide whether the cushion is your thing.

Anti-torsion

Thanks to the large carbon plate in the midsole, the shoe offers me excellent torsion resistance as well as excellent arch support! In the breakthrough phase, the shoes won’t deform excessively, but definitely some slight deformation is inevitable.

Traction and durability

Is the outsole sensitive to the court dust/debris? Can it deal with various surfaces?

The AJ 11 features herringbone in both the forefoot and the heel areas while the middle portion is covered with crystal materials. If I say that the cushion is super poor, then the traction, on the contrary, is super good.

Personally I prefer outdoor courts to indoor ones. On concrete and blacktop courts without much dust and debris, mostly, I haven’t experienced slippage in it so far. And it’s also true that abrasive surfaces can save the shoe’s traction. Besides, some occasional wipes will keep the bite healthier or have it improved. But even if you don’t want to bother yourself with that, it’s utterly OK because you won’t be  sliding all over the place without wiping them.

On indoor courts, however, I’ve so far played in it for only three times. And my impression is that on smoother indoor courts, the traction is somewhat decreased. After all, though it is super good, it is not undefeatable.

Durability

For the durability, you may first get some clues from the pictures here. This is what they look like right now. To be frank with you, I had no confidence in the durability of the outsole because of its crystal material, but I found later that this was quite a prejudice. A week later, the outsole stood the tests of high-intensity plays and remained intact still. So I deem that you can rest assured to play on concrete courts.

Overall

The AJ 11 is a surprising package, that’s for sure. Except for the cushion it has delivered everything I need. I can say that I feel secure, comfortable, and confident in these. Not only are  their performances made the most of, but my athletic performance is also put to good use.

The sneaker is definitely perfect, and for those completists this is far from their expectations. However, for the most of us, the shoe can be listed as a top-ranking one and is satisfying at the same time. Giving it an opprotunity, the odds are that you’ll also dig this one a lot !

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Air Jordan 14 “Last Shot” Performance Review

As Nike’s most successful signature shoes series, Air Jordan is on the verge of becoming a household name. But I dare say that not all AJ shoes are as excellent as they were hyped. Some of them are truly outstanding and impressive while some are merely beckoning because of their nice looking. Then when it comes to the protagonist of today, the Air Jordan 14 “Last Shot”, is it a HIT or MISS? Let me share with you my detailed thoughts about it.

Although it was not attractive or breathtaking  at the first sight, for me, how it plays on the court is just the one thing that I really care, and I think this is the same for most of you. Now that I’ve copped the shoes for over a year, I’ve got certain knowledge of it and here is my long-term based  Air Jordan 14 “Last Shot”review.

1.Cushion

How’s the impact absorption? Can it offer players sufficient energy return properties?

As a matter of fact, in addition to the price, we are most concerned about the setups of the AJ series sneakers, which is the so-called comfort or foot feeling. So is the “Last Shot”capable of providing that for us?

Someone once asked me that “What are the AJ shoes that can be used for both high-intensity plays and daily wearing and that are also good looking?” Well, my answer are AJ11, AJ12, AJ13 and AJ14 which are all after my own heart in more ways than one. Among them the one with the most excellent performance is the AJ13, followed by AJ14. And with regard to the AJ 14, I am most satisfied with its cushion. After all, as a player who belong to the explosiveness style, the cushion experience it offers to me is way beyond words.

The retro AJ14 features the separated air cushions and a large anti-torsion setup in the sole. Though it is a bit disappointing that the cushions are relatively small, the setup is still playable and quite satisfactory, personally.

In terms of the fan-shaped air cushion in the forefoot, I can barely feel its feedback. Because the air cushion is placed close to the arch area, it is almost impossible for me to feel or use it, not least  when there are stops or direction changes. Does that sound awful? Well, it is not so! Instead, thanks to the brick-like forefoot , I can enjoy a very fast, responsive & stable ride, smooth step transitions as well as a sense of wonderful court feel.

At the meantime, however, the forefoot is also a bit self-contradictory. While I can enjoy its good, it also makes me feel that I don’t feel as happy playing in these shoes as barefoot, which can be said to be quite bewildering.

Compared with the forefoot cushion, the rear one is much more wonderful and satisfying. For me, I can feel its softness and elasticity. Then could the heel feel too much for you? I don’t think so. Even for players weighing above 75kg, they can still enjoy its magic, and though it’s got good compression, it also rebounds back into shape extremely quickly.

It should be mentioned that for different players, their opinions of the setup will vary greatly. The forefoot cushion, being too thin and small, is not suitable for everyone. If you are also the explosiveness type, then it may be your thing as well.

2. Wrapping

Can the vamp wrap the feet well? Will there be extra room in the toebox? Here’s the answers!

To tell the truth, the wrapping of AJ14 is a little bit strange. Normally, the average people won’t feel any pressure in their insteps. On the contrary, there may be some extra room above their insteps while the toebox is somewhat small so that pinches are quite possible during actual plays.

Therefore, for wide footers, not least those with protruding thumb joints, they cannot go true to size of the shoe and it’s thus recommended to go up 1/2 a size to avoid this hassle. As for the normal foot types, they can go with their regular sizes, though the vamp wrapping performance is just so-so, not impressive and great yet.

The nice thing about the quick lacing system is that it allows you to easily lace up your shoes and provides some wrapping around the arch area. Besides that, the design of the heel also enables you to enjoy nice wrapping at the heel, which, again, is quite different from the vamp wrapping.

So in general, the vamp wrapping is not satisfactory while the heel area fits snugly and its wrapping is quite comfortable, if not perfect.

3. Traction

How’s the grip on all manner of surfaces? Is the outsole sensitive to the dust/debris on court? Is the grip better indoors or outdoors?

Unfortunately, I wanna tell you that the AJ14 infield grip, due to the hard outsole, is very poor, especially on dusty indoor courts. Although the outsole features the traditional herringbone pattern which should provide god-like traction, it doesn’t turn out to be as good as it sounds. Anything can sound cool or promising before you actually take a try in the flesh.

As you can see in the picture, the outer area of the sole is rather smooth without any lines, which might lead to slippage on indoor courts when there are such movements as breakthroughs and direction changes, as is told by my bitter experience.

Nevertheless, it is not always that bad. Good news is that on outdoor courts the traction becomes much better and I even couldn’t help asking — “Are these the same shoes I used to wear indoors?”

Yeah, sometimes abrasive surfaces can save a shoe’s traction and this  Air Jordan 14 “Last Shot” is also a case in point. On blacktop and concrete, mostly, I was ablaze to find that I barely had any issues with the traction outdoors. Although dust or debris can at times get stuck in the grains and a few occasional wipes will keep the bite healthy, I seldom do the cleaning which, in my eyes, is more of a chore. Despite that, I never slid all over the place.

Over and above that, because the outsole is hard enough, its wear resistance, or durability, is quite impressive. I even think there isn’t much difference between this one and the XDR.

4. Protection

Talking about a shoe’s protection, it is also of great importance. In some reviewer’s deconstruction I got to know that the AJ14 uses foam that is shark-teeth-like at the forefoot, which can enhance the wrapping and improve the protection while also makes it more nice-looking.

It is worth mentioning that this design also takes into account the anti-rollover performance. The outward extended “teeth”  also increases the contact area with the ground, and the security therefore is also improved.

5. Anti-torsion

In terms of the anti-torsion piece in the arch, it is quite large and it doesn’t need much hype because its power alone is enough to deeply impress us. On the personal note, it’s safe to say that its anti-torsion performance is almost second to none in the sneaker market currently.

 

 

Overall:

Personally speaking, this shoe is cost-effective considering its overall performances. And if you take a great liking for it, it’s also worth your dollar. Just like when I bought AJ12 CNY at its original price, I copped it as soon as possible because I liked it.

I can’t say I had a terrific experience of my life with the Air Jordan 14 “Last Shot”, but what I can say is that the shoe makes me feel secure, comfortable, and confident while I was playing on court. It’s a solid buy if you are the explosiveness style just like I am. Or if you are looking for an almost   well-rounded sneaker, this is also a good choice for you.

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Air Jordan 34 Performance Review

It’s high time that we talked about the Air Jordan 34 that has always been highly expected ever since it was available. It should be mentioned that it’s been quite a while since I’ve played in it. Maybe a season or two. Although it may sound not long enough to get intimate knowledge of every nook and cranny of the sneaker, I deem that I can still share with you my feelings and experiences in it. So let me present to you my Air Jordan 34 performance review.

The shoe, ostensibly, looks quite beckoning and is also a breath of fresh air. But it’s known that this is merely a part of the whole story. What really counts is its performances on court. So is it a HIT or MISS on earth? Well, let me share with you my opinions in this review in which I’ll break it down from the following perspectives.

1.Wrapping and Breathability

How does the vamp material perform? Is it a reliable one for summer day use?

The Air Jordan 34 utilizes light cotton cloth and cicadon all over the vamp such as on the midfoot, toebox, and heel. Therefore, the most intuitive feeling when I first wore the Air Jordan 34 was that I could hardly feel the existence of the vamp. Yes! You read that right! The vamp is so lightweight and fits my feet so well that I feel like I were merely wearing a pair of socks. Without any heel slippage or side-to-side movement, I can always play to my heart’s content.

When doing any breakthrough movement in actual plays, I feel as if my feet were integrated with the vamp whose response is particularly quick.  Though there’s barely any stretch, it can be a good thing security-wise. So you may just rest assured and trust the vamp material.

Based on what I’m feeling, the relatively lightweight cicadan vamp and inner padding make the Air Jordan 34 more breathable than the traditional leather or woven vamps. Even on indoor courts where the temperature is relatively high, I won’t be hassled by any stuffiness underfoot. All these, in my view, should be accredited to the lightness of the vamp.

2.Cushion

How does the cushion feel? What about the ride height? Can it offer comfort and stability? Here lie the answers!

According to the official, we know that a large Zoom Air sits in the forefoot of the Air Jordan 34 while a relatively small hexagonal Zoom Air accompanies the heel area. Sounds like a fairly standard setup for the price, no other way to put it.

But the biggest surprise of Air Jordan 34 is that the Eclipse Plate (commonly known as anti-torsion Plate) technology visible to the naked eye at the midsole also plays a role in improving the shoe’s overall cushioning, which is also the so-called “mysterious auxiliary cushioning” by many other reviewers.

With such a powerful setup, how does the AJ34’s cushioning performance feel like? Well, my experience told me that it is not so ideally soft but a bit hard underfoot, which, I think, is intentional by the designer.

Air Jordan 34 is, in fact, suitable for players who belong to the explosiveness style. For those speed-oriented players, the first step is very important whereas the over-soft midsole will weaken part of their performance. Therefore, the Air Jordan 34’s slightly hard midsole will give timely feedback to players so as not to weaken their strength in the first step of starting.

A bit hard as the midsole is, it never falls short of comfort and stability. Both the forefoot and heel cushions still offer stellar impact protection as well as comfort and stability. In terms of the  forefoot and midfoot areas, they feel a bit lower to the ground than does the heel. Because of this,  I can enjoy the ultra-smooth overall heel-to-toe stride.

3.Support

How much support does it provide then? Is it an all-round one?

As mentioned earlier, there is an Eclipse Plate in the midsole, with which I am rather secured during actual plays. From startup to takeoff, I can feel the arch support in every step, which should be credited the hollow structure of the Eclipse Plate.

Unlike the traditional single-layer TPU or carbon plates, the hollowed-out Eclipse Plate structure is divided into two layers, which also explains why the Air Jordan 34 provides extremely visible arch support.

As we all know, a good, supportive sneaker isn’t necessarily a high top or even a mid top one. If designed well, a low-top model can do an equally excellent job. And the AJ34 is just a case in point. While I am playing in the shoes, the vamp holds my foot in place nicely and there aren’t any apparent restrictions.

4.Stability and Anti-rollover

Though I’ve mentioned stability several times before, I think it deserves to be mentioned once again.

Over and above the advantages mentioned of the vamp, it has one more merit: the cicada vamp actually has stronger tear resistance than braided ones, thus providing excellent protection and improving stability for players. Although the shoe has accompanied me for quite a while, its vamp is just holding up well up to this moment.

The padding inside the sidewalls not only helps lock down the ankle & heel, but is just right there to keep the foot in place and stabilize you torsionally. So I deem that the shoe doesn’t need much hype because it just offers us what we need and keeps doing its stuff on the pitch.

Besides that, the the outer area of the toe uses the anti-rollover design which makes that performance of Air Jordan 34 significantly improved. Though not to the point of stunning, AJ rarely fails hoopers in this category.

5.Traction and Durability

How’s the grip of the traction? Can it stand the tests of various and challenging surfaces?

Firstly, let’s talk about the pattern. The AJ34 features a herringbone pattern throughout the outsole with some curved rubber strips in the forefoot, which laterally & medially accommodate quick changes of direction.

The pattern alone, from my perspective, looks quite reliable on court. The herringbone pattern and the rubber strips combined should, in theory, provide stellar traction. Then whether or not it actually behaves that way? Well, I should say that it’s almost as good as that but not yet ideal.

Indoor performance

Indoors, I am prone to play on wooden floors that are relatively smooth but with some dirt or dust. Based on my experiences of the past several months, the traction of this one is good, quite within my expectation. But there is one problem: the outsole can appeal to dust, which, in a sense, has some implications for the traction performance. In other words, when there are a lot of dust on the outsole, the traction will be greatly reduced, although not to a level where it’s unplayable.

To avoid this problem, it requires to wipe the outsoles off, maybe every now and then. After all, one can not afford to stop and start scrubbing the soles off every few minutes while playing. So some preparation before playing is essential.

Outdoor performance

Though I am not a big advocate of hooping outdoors, I still prefer outdoor playing not least when it is sunny with warm breeze outside. So you could imagine how agreeable it would be on such days when the AJ34 got intimate contact with the outdoor courts.

On concrete floors, mostly, and sometimes rubber ones,I seldom had issues with the traction. For me, every time before playing, I would wipe the outsole off with great care, because of which, the outsole managed to bite healthily and I never slid all over the place. So in this perspective, I think the outsole can stand the tests of various and challenging surfaces without much efforts.

Durability

The thick herringbone can lasts for several months, maybe longer. That’s for sure. After all, my AJ34’s outsole is still relatively intact, except for some damages in the high-use areas. But probably some more seasons later, the outsole may change beyond all recognition.

Overall:

Rounding the AJ34 review up: does it deserve the dollar?

Of course, I dare not say it would satisfy everyone, but for me, it has truly delivered in almost everything I needed. It fits me surprisingly well while also sticking with my regular size even if I am a wide footer. And I think many of you should get satisfied with it too! So just go with your regular sizes as well and you’ll find that your dollars are not wasted!

Now that there leaves nothing more to talk about, I’ll just stop here and leave it for you to decide whether this is your thing.

 

 

 

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Unboxing: PUMA MB.01

Time has finally come! Let me present to you the details of PUMA MB.01 that you are concerned about. Although it’s been only two months since I’ve got and played in it and its overall performances require some more tests, it is better for you to first get intimate knowledge of the sneaker that you’ve got or may be considering purchasing. After all, we all know that the details are an important part of the whole story.

So is it a HIT or MISS? Does it deserve the dollar? Go along with me in checking the details!

LaMelo Ball’s first signature basketball shoe, the MB.01, is also PUMA’s first signature sneaker since the company returned to the basketball market in 2018. The bold colorway and unique design have been quite a nice combination of Bauer’s personal style.

As you might have noticed, the shoe box is covered with brilliant cosmic colors and has a window on the lid. It doesn’t take a detective to know such information as size and Art.No because they’ve been printed on it. So no more reiteration here.

As an aside, it is truly considerate of the brand to place a hard paper inside so as to reduce the damage to shoes during transportation.

In theory, the 3D-printed vamp can fit the foot better and the vamp material can also provide excellent support and protection. But, honestly, I don’t think it is as good as it is hyped. Judging from my two months’ play, the vamp wrapping, and the support and protection are not bad, but not to the point as to deeply impress me, either. So you may not expect too much of it.

Printed on the vamp is the creative Slogan of Ball’s famous “NOT FROM HERE”.

Although the vamp alone is not impressive, the shoelaces, in contrast, help make up for its imperfectness by improving the overall wrapping to a great extent. There are 6 groups of shoelace holes in total. The first 2 groups are the kind of dynamic design while the 3-5 groups are of metal material. On top of that, there’s also the setup on the tongue that effectively prevents the tongue from deflecting during movements.

In spite of all that, trying the shoe on, in my opinion, is best if you think you’ve got an unusual foot shape and want to avoid any discomfort that may be caused by picking the wrong size.

One big thing about the MB.01 is the different materials used on both sides of shoe. As you can notice in the picture, the patterns there are also different from each other.

For the collar, it is designed to be high inside and low outside which brings more flexibility for players.

The forefoot of the outsole here is upturned, which plays a significant role in enhance overall stability.

The rigid TPU also improves lateral stability.

The midsole adopts NITRO FOAM cushion technology with PUMA’s supercritical nitrogen foaming craft. The lightweight and low-density FOAM material, an integration of softness and comfort, can offer powerful feedback. In addition, the wave-shape midsole also supports the arch area to a certain extent. Well, on paper that sounds terrific.

Nevertheless, based on my plays of the past two months, I don’t think PUMA MB.01 come off as particularly luxurious or anything crazy from a cushion standpoint, though it is still more than sufficient for me to play high-intensity plays. However, I am not saying that it is not good. Depending on what you require of it and the time it takes you to really start feeling the full potential of the cushion, you’ll feel that things are just awesome once you are used to it.

On the outsole, the words are very special. The “RARE” displayed there represent Ball’s extraordinary talent that can’t be imitated on the court. In the forefoot, centering the force point, the multi-directional lines can offer solider traction while the plenty of diamond-shaped lines on the back provide more stability.

A single shoe of size 42 weighs about 413.8 grams. These, of course, aren’t the lightest on paper but they are never bottom-heavy or clunky in general.

Overall:

This PUMA MB.01 is a wonderful model that has delivered almost everything I need, though there do exist some flaws.

Personally, I can’t go true to size, and here it is recommended to go down 1/2 a size. But if you think you’ve got wide feet, you might as well go with your regular size.

The width of the footbed is moderate, and when I fasten the shoelaces, I can immediately feel the strong wrapping at the vamp and the heel. In a word, my feet just sit comfortably inside without any heel slippage or side-to-side movement.

For the full-foot cushion, the energy feedback from the heel is far more obvious than that of the forefoot, but I think this is just right to the point for me who are used to landing on my heel.

And whether it is the rubber on the outside of the forefoot, or the hard TPU on the outside of the heel, they both play a very good role in improving the overall stability.

All in all, I think those of you who usually play on outdoor courts, the odds are that  you’ll dig this one a lot too!

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Shop the Look: Nike Air Jordan

It is nothing new that with some signature shoes’ reputation and their high popularity, their prices will also rise correspondingly, some even skyrocketing to incredible levels, which many sneaker lovers will naturally frown upon. But good news is that the prices of many shoes, even the famous ones, tend to stay stable and affordable in recent two years. For example, a lot of Air Jordan models are favored by the fans, yet many of them were out of reach because of their high prices. To fans’ relief, quite a few AJ models that their beloved have now remained at the prices that they were originally retailed at. Therefore, let’s turn back the clock and take a look at some of those cost-effective models.

1、AJ1 “Court Purple”

The white and purple color, which was released two years ago, has remained at its original price nearly two months after its official release. This colorway here, because of its similarity to that of the classic model, the Air Jordan 1 OG High “Black Toe”, has also received a lot of attention. In contrast to the “Black Toe”, the biggest difference in this one lies in that the original purple on the toe has been replaced with white, and most of the black leather on the body has also been replaced with purple leather.

If you were  in love with the “Black Toe” but couldn’t get it, you still have an alternative here. Don’t forget that  you’ll be snatching this kick for its original retail price. Actually you’re in for a good one!

2、AJ3 “Retro SE Red Cement”

The “Retro SE Red Cement” released during the NBA All-Star game in 2020 is actually one of my favorites. After playing in it for 4month+, it is safe to say that the techs adopted in the shoe altogether nail down the balance between keeping the model feathery, comfy and modern-ish while also satiate the needs of players.

AJ3’s most classic colorway is undoubtedly the “black cement”. Nevertheless, this “Red Cement” is, from my perspective, a breath of fresh air and quite recognizable. The vamp, having been largely changed into red leather, seems to be endowed with vigor and vitality. Over and above that, the classic crack pattern of the heel has been retained, making it all the more beckoning and outstanding.

Last but not the least, the market price of this one once fell below $160 which makes it no longer out of reach. Therefore, many fans of Air Jordan were more than satisfied with this and the shoe’s terrific all-around performances on courts.

3、AJ5 “Rukawa Kaede”

When the words, AJ, Slamdunk and Rukawa Kaede, come together, you must have understood the significance behind them.

The brand-new colorway of AJ5 “Rukawa Kaede”released in 2020 was once a source of heated discussion on social media for quite a period of time, from which we can get a glimpse of its popularity. Compared with the edition in 2013, this retro one is more like the original version, which can definitely meet the needs of OG shoe fans.

The current market price of this one does not change much, maintaining at about  the original price. If you happen to have some complex of the Slamdunk, this one is your thing!

4、AJ6 “Washed Denim”

The AJ6 “Washed Denim”was released in 2019 and again received a lot popularity among the AJ fans. The overall appearance of this one is similar to that of some joint work with Levi’s. With a denim vamp and brown leather trim on the laces, the shoes AJ6 “Washed Denim” look great with jeans for spring and fall.

In spite of that, the price of this one seems somewhat bewildered and unstable. In the year it was launched its price was once down to about $130, which electrified its fans quite a lot. However, I won’t recommend it to everyone because the midsole, based on my own experience, obviously left something to be desired, say, the renergy return and the cushion responsiveness.

Nevertheless, my experience cannot suit everyone and is only for your reference. Therefore, just know what you are getting for this price with the AJ6 “Washed Denim” and I think many of you will still be satisfied.

5.AJ14 “Reverse Ferrari”

The AJ14, which was inspired by Ferrari’s yellow colorway, was once a cult when it was newly released in 2019. The yellow shoe body is actually quite textured and its upturned carbon fiber board is now a rarity in the actual combat shoe market.

What’s more thrilling is that the price of this one has also slumped to less than $160, making it all the more cost-effective.

Over and above that, I also want to mention that regarding the build of the shoe, it is quite strong enough so that even heavy dudes will also find it aggreable. And the foot containment can never be an issue for someone very explosive and/or heavy.

 

Overall:

For those who value their dollars and care more about the details of the shoes foregoing, I think there’s certainly  much more to know than just a cost-effective shoe list here.

No doubt having a bit more knowledge of the one model you are going to purchase will only be of great avail for you.

As fans of Air Jordan you must have been aware of those models’ popularity and now you have a bunch of potential options at your disposal! So I’ll just leave it for you to fully use your discretion.

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Nike Kyrie Low 2 Performance Review

Like some of you, when the Nike Kyrie Low 2 was released I didn’t make a purchase for I thought it would come down in price sooner or later. However, I did not expect that the price of the shoe has not changed much since it was put on sale for nearly half a year. But on the other hand, I think this indirectly reflects the shoe’s actual performance is excellent.

Actually when I first saw the shoe I could see a lot of characteristics of Irving’s signature shoes of the past. For example, the overall appearance of the shoe is much like the third signature shoe while the support plates on both sides, not least the inner arch, are like that of the sixth one. Some reviewer also says that the Nike Kyrie Low 2 can’t be simply defined as a low-top version of the Nike Kyrie 2, because in many ways, the two shoes are completely different despite the technical similarities.

Now that I’ve finally got the shoes and played in them for over 3 months, I’ll present to you my personal experience with it and its performance review. Let’s get started then!

 

1.Vamp

 

Unlike some of Irving’s recent signature shoes, the Kyrie Low2 doesn’t look very round, but rather elongated, with a slim body. The vamp is made from a large piece of engineered mesh, and I think it’s far more delicate and textured than the first version of signature shoe. Besides that, the material is also quite breathable even in hot summer days. With the weather getting warmer, you can still rest assured to play to your heart’s content.

 

Then what about the wrapping? Can it firmly lock or fix the feet?Again, you can rest assured! The vamp wrapping is quite excellent without any toe bumps. Looking closely at the shoe you’ll find that there are something special about the shoelace system. Although it looks like there are only 6 groups of laces, it is not so. There are actually 4 sets of laces in the foremost, through adjusting which you can enjoy the most suitable wrapping according to your own foot type. As for the other three groups, they are to to cooperate with supporting pieces at the side of the vamp, which not only ensures excellent wrapping but also improves support.

 

When it comes to the heel, although there is no extra foam filling, the lining has been relatively thick, and the counter there is also big and stiff enough to offer support. At the outside there is the red woven material to provide additional wrapping.

2.Traction

 

Does it bite aggressively on various grounds? Does it wear out easily and what’s the state of my Kyrie Low 2 at the moment?

 

The big thing about the shoe is that it is prestigious for its traction performance. According to many players, the Nike Kyrie Low 2’s traction is superb, even in the outfield, and it can hold the ground firmly. With that, the problem of heel slipping and side-to-side movement are virtually nil.

While Irving’s signature shoes are known for having a spherical, or rounded, outsole, that of kyrie Low2 is a more conventional look. In the forefoot and the heel area, there is obvious extension while the upturned design has been remained, which is still very suitable for players who are good at making breakthroughs.

 

In fact, on the inside of the forefoot, the outsole has a large upturn to increase the friction between the shoe and the ground. In terms of the outsole pattern, I think it is quite similar to that of Nike KOBE NXT 360, which is the kind of fine granular grains. The only thing that requires particular mention is that when I played in it for the first time, I almost slipped and “kissed” the ground, which may be due to dusts on court. But since then the traction has performed to my heart’s desire.

 

Nevertheless, there is still some feedback from consumers that the Nike Kyrie Low 2, compared with the Kyrie 2, is not that sustained in offering traction on outdoor courts and also lacks the overall flexibility that the Kyrie 2 boasts of. But unfortunately, I haven’t experienced the Kyrie 2 before. Therefore, with respect to this problem, I just want to bring it up so that you could form an idea for yourself.

 

3.Cushion

 

Let’s break down the energy return , step comfort and stability then. Its cushioning is probably the best of all Irving signature shoes. Well, it’s no exaggeration! Besides the traction, the midsole is also one of the highlights of the shoe. The separated Zoom Air in the forefoot and the heel area, though not the top-ranking ones,is a fairly standard setup for the price and also have huge implications for the shoe’s overall performance.

 

For most guards, the small square-like zooms with the foams is absolutely adequate for employment on courts. But for players with lighter weights, they may not feel the energy return obviously. Take my experience. For me who weigh about 75 kg, at first I had to play 3-hour sessions for the midsole and the zooms to fully break in and begin working to their full potential. After that, the setup became super comfortable; the forefoot cushion is nice and bouncy though the rear one is not equally satisfactory. Usually I land on my forefoot and I feel very stable underfoot, and the ride is also a bit low off the ground. But if you are used to landing on the heel, you may feel the rear cushion quite stiff and therefore not enough for use.

4.Durability

 

In terms of the durability, after I played in it for several months and more than 20 matches, the outsole lines remain relatively intact and the overall model is holding up very well as of today. Although there do exist some wear and tear in the outside of the rear part and the inside of the forefoot, I deem that these are normal in the high-use areas and the shoe has already done a stellar job.

 

5 Other details

 

The inner support plate extends directly to the arch, which is similar to the Velcro design of the Irving 6. Such a design actually provides some rigidity and also anti-torsional support at the meantime.

Overall:

Summarizing the Nike Kyrie Low 2: the shoe is definitely worth the dollar, though not perfect, nor versatile, and it can stack up against the competition.

 

In general, the design of the shoe may not impress you too much at the first glance, but the more you look at it, the more likelier you’ll get attracted. With such setups and the public praise of many players, I am quite satisfied with its actual performance and feel quite delighted at having copped the right one.

 

I haven’t fully tested the shoe, but based on my own experience and what I’ve heard from other reviewers, the shoe is definitely cost-effective. So if you are someone who values that greatly, this is your thing!

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LBJ17 Performance Review

Let’s waste no time and begin our topic today. The protagonist of this review is the LeBron17 that is suitable for heavy players, weighing between 75kg and 120kg, including me, and heavy defenders and forwards. In answer to the question “Is it for daily walking or actual plays?”, I should say that the shoe is more than suitable for both, though it is not without disadvantages. Hence my presenting this comprehensive LeBron17 review to you.

The shoe is positioned as the top flagship signature model. When it was available, I was electrified at seeing the information of its setups and you should be too! And shortly after that, I tried my best to cop a pair as soon as possible. So after 4 months hooping and shooting both indoors and outdoors, what kind of impression did its performances leave on me? Well, my friend, if there’s a word for it, that is top-ranking! I’ll then talk about its performances from the fullest possible perspectives.

 

1 Vamp & Comfort

 

LeBron17 does not use the battleknit adopted by the previous two generations but the brand new knit composite. So what’s the difference between them? The biggest ascendancy of the latter lies in that the toe bump, which is quite a nerve-wracking issue in LeBron16, is no longer a hassle for wearers. Besides that, the Knit Composite upper is more malleable and wear much more comfortable while the Battleknit is far tougher ,which even causes blisters for some consumers.

Nevertheless, the result of this increase in comfort is a decrease in support, though I am not seriously affected by this. Also, because of the forefoot design, the vamp is not covered by the Phylon, leading to the possible separation of the vamp and the sole when you make such movements as sudden stop, which is similar to, but not as severe as, Alphadunk. In fact, if you happened to have experienced the Alphadunk before, you must know exactly what I’m talking about. Therefore, the vamp support of LeBron17 is a little insufficient.

Compared with its predecessor, the vamp comfort of LeBron17 has been improved, but this improvement is in exchange for the vamp support. So whether it is good or not, I’ll just leave it for you to decide.

2 Wrapping

While the vamp wrapping is not so good, the heel wrapping, on the contrary, is terrific and impressive. Well, I meant it and maybe only after you’ve played in it will you find that it’s no exaggeration. After all, words sometimes cannot be as impressive as personal experience.

Despite that, the heel wrapping, from my perspective, is a bit hard, quite firm and secure. At the same time, there is a built-in counter and a TPU on the outside, offering heel support and protection. So it’s safe to say that the heel wrapping is really excellent.

Albeit the prominence of the heel wrapping, there is still a minor problem, which, however, may not be so for you. So personally speaking, I found it very hard to get the shoelaces tightened and I even haven’t found out the root of problem. But don’t be vexed, buddy! You are still getting maximum comfort and mostly solid wrapping because the problem causes no harm for the wrapping performance.

3 Midsole

This midsole this time is pretty satisfying to me for one simple reason–I can make the most of it! To tell the truth, although I am a fan of James for 13 years, my first pair of LeBron shoes was the LeBron13 Elite, and then the LeBron14, 15 and 16, all of which, however, were so hard for me that I couldn’t feel their cushions.

LeBron17, nevertheless, is a different story. The separated Zoom Air in the forefoot and the rear part can be obviously felt as soon as you step on it. Besides, it also offers a great deal of feedback during startup, which, personally, is of great help for me. For those weighing around 75kg, the cushions of LeBron series can be put to good use, but it should be made particular of that this LeBron17 is not suitable for guards of small weight because of its high center of gravity.

As for the Max 270 Air cushion in the rear, it deforms obviously when it is pressed hard by hand.  In addition, the cushioning it offers me is similar to that of Air Force Max. Therefore, in a word, my impression of the midsole is that the forefoot cushion is quite bouncy while the rear one is rather stable and can therefore provides me with enough protection.

In spite of that, it is not without shortcoming–the exposed rear cushion risk exploding either by being hard trampled or accidentally punctured. So whether the excellent cushion outweighs te disadvantage, I’ll leave it up to you to use your discretion.

4 Outsole

Can it bite various floors aggressively? Is it sensitive to the dust or dirt on courts? And what about its durability?

In fact, according to some of my friends who happened to have LeBron17, I’ve heard no complaints with regard to its traction from them. Although I dare not say that the outsole can bite aggressively on all kinds of surfaces, it does so on the courts where I usually play, including the indoor wooden ones and the outdoor concrete and asphalt ones. Well, let me put it more frankly by saying that the traction of this one is deadly. Yes, you read that right!

I have to own that I don’t get any intimate knowledge of the outsole materials, but the traction is all-directional and the stops are instant with it. The outsole just bites the floors like a lion with its prey!

But with that follows the problem of dirt-sensitivity. On the indoor courts with dust, the outsole will become a bit “tamer” because it appeals to dust somewhat easily, which is likely to bring on slipping. And to retain the outsole’s aggressiveness, it is essential to get it cleaned now and then.

As for the durability, actually I didn’t know how long it would last. Initially I was surprised by the shoe’s other performances, say, the midsole cushion, but after 4-months’ play, I am all the more amazed by the outsole durability. It seems that the durability is just not what it should be for this price, which certainly defeats that of other models of the same price. So what about my LeBron17? Well, it is so far holding up very well!

5 Anti-rollover & Anti-torsion

The rollover resistance of these shoes is also relatively good. Although the center of gravity of them is still high, it is much lowered compared to that of the LeBron16. However, I think that should the outsole be extended outward to a greater extent, the shoe’s overall stability and security will be further improved.

When it comes to the anti-torsion, it is also good, if not excellent. But for actual plays, from my point of view, it is more than enough and can stand the test of time.

Now, aside from its performances, I’m gonna present to you a brief comparison between the LeBron17 and the AJ34.

On the face of it, the texture of LeBron17 is relatively poor, and the overall appearance is not as inviting as AJ34. So in this point, it is simply a matter of personal preference. When it comes to their performances, LeBron17 is more suitable for heavy players whereas AJ34 fit better the agile forwards as well as guards. The AJ34 is actually a new and innovative product, while the LeBron17 is more like an improved and upgraded one, which is designed to be more suitable for more people.

Overall:

So is this LeBron17 worth it over the previous generations? And who is it suitable for? Well, I think at this point, the answers must be crystal clear.

In general, the performance of LeBron17 belongs to one of the top-ranking models. Although it is not as nice-looking as other shoes, it can still be saved by the various colorways. On top of that, compared with LeBron16, LeBron17 wears more comfortable either for daily walking or high-intensity plays.

I think this one is a near-perfect model for heavier and bigger players as well as agile forwards and guards, as is mentioned earlier. It has taken comfort, cushion and traction to another level, though there is still room for improvement. But after all, nothing in the world is perfect, and LeBron17 can already be said to be quite excellent. Anyway, however good others say of it, you don’t know whether it is your right one until you experience it. So I’ll stop here and leave it for you to decide whether it’s your thing.