Basketball Phantom

Nike LeBron Soldier 11 Review

Score

MATERIAL 88%
TRACTION 82%
FIT 90%
SUPPORT 89%
CUSHION 93%

Are you getting bored of your Lebron soldier 10 and you’re wondering just how much of a difference there is compared to the new Lebron soldier 11?

Or are you just a big fan of the Lebron soldier series and you’re interested in their latest iteration?

You’ve come to the right place, as I have done a review that will answer all your questions about the Lebron soldier 11.

Nothing beats putting on a nice pair of shoes and playing a good game, we all want the best, and we all want to look and feel like stars. For some of us, that starts with getting the right shoes. The first question I ask myself when doing a review is; would I feel like Curry in this?

If I won’t then I’m not buying – that does seem unreasonable, so I end up compromising. Let’s see if the LeBron soldier 11 brings out that Curry feel. While Nike’s Lebron soldier 10 wasn’t the greatest of buys, it had its own fair share of glory.

Now that the Lebron soldier 11 is here, you’re probably thinking it’s time for something new and hopefully, it comes with none of the flaws that were oh so popular with the soldier 10. Below, I have made a list of some major advantages and disadvantages of the Lebron soldier 11.

Things We Liked

  • It’s not just about the looks; the Lebron soldier 11 is also one of the most comfortable pair of sneakers in the market.
  • Unlike in the previous versions, the comfort it affords doesn’t come at the detriment of its fitness. It conforms to the size and shape of yours legs, providing you with firmness.
  • Thanks to the zoom technology that has been adapted, the Lebron soldier 11 provides you with good impact protection and quick responsiveness.
  • Straps are great and they keep the shoes secure, enunciating the feel of overall firmness
  • Has a wide base that helps to keep you balanced, especially when performing sudden movements like hard cuts and landing.
  • The Lebron soldier 11 comes with a lace-less design that may save you precious few seconds on the play.
  • Not so often do you find lightweight basketball shoes, but the Lebron soldier 11 offers you ultra-light weight feel, eliminating the feel of encumbrance some complained about in the Lebron soldier 10.
  • Great mesh material used in the upper as it provides airflow to the feet.
  • It’s not a great shoe if it isn’t beautiful; the Lebron soldier 11 features a fanciful new look that borders on the futuristic.

Things We Didn’t Like

  • Apparently, wear and tear meets the Lebron soldier 11 halfway across the road as lots of users have complained about the swoosh starting to peel off just a few times into use.
  • The Lebron soldier 11 has a slightly narrower heel and more zoom protrusion than the Lebron soldier 10.
  • Slippery as a heel is what I say about its traction; the soldier 11 might be an all-round decent shoe, but falling off your feet while making that hard cut left to avoid your man isn’t exactly awe inspiring.
  • No real improvement to the materials used on the Lebron soldier 11 as compared to its predecessor the Lebron soldier 10. The premium version too isn’t very distinct from the regular material wise. If I’m paying extra for the premium version, I want to see an obvious difference in the material or on court performance.

Materials

Nike has always been known for their love of variations, producing different versions of every iteration released. The soldier 11 comes in two very distinct versions, both of which have different price tags – as expected.

The woven mesh of the upper also provides more breathability than its predecessor but may still feel slightly suffocating.

Although some have claimed that while the mesh material doesn’t exactly allow so much air, it’s still quite comfortable and they don’t feel their feet suffocating in them. Also, for both versions; the toe area is quite spacious and gives the toes room to flex around a bit.

The midsole is fitted fit the zoom tech and phylon, providing enough flexibility. The rubber of the outsole is also of good quality; very hard and allows you the peace of mind of playing on various surfaces without the fear of quick wear.

The premium version has a somewhat different make up, the nylon is substituted for a nubuck mudguard – which makes for the same feel in my opinion – and is slightly heavier. The general suede overlay also adds some aesthetic qualities to the premium.

Both are durable, very comfortable and pleasing to look at (maybe the premium more than the consumer version).

One downside to both material and design; I’m not sure I want to rock my soldier 11 on street cloths, they look really good, no doubt, they’re just overly sporty in my opinion.

Traction

A major flaw with the Lebron soldier 10 was its traction. Owners all around had a hard time staying on their feet during play, plus it gets dusty real fast. In the soldier 11, we were hoping for better traction.

The sole of the soldier 11 is fitted with a triangular traction pattern, it’s quite pretty to look at and it comes in different sizes, but it still didn’t perform so well on dusty courts. It holds well on clean courts though, gripping the floor well plus it doesn’t hold as much dust as the soldier 10 did.

After examining the rubber used for the outsole, I concluded that the traction problem of the LeBron soldier has more to do with the pattern drawn on it than the material used.

I’m not sure I’ll give the Lebron soldier 11 a 10 score for traction, I want to have that confidence when I play on any surface. Sliding all over the court doesn’t exactly inspire great confidence.

Fit

This is what I like the most about the Soldier 11, it fits really well. I mean, I’ve owned some great pair of shoes, and the soldier 11 stands right up at the top as my favorite as regards its fitness. They’re a great fit.

Lebron Soldier 10 was also good, but it didn’t have the same snug feel that is obvious in its progeny. The three large straps that accompanied the soldier 10 were changed in favor of 4 smaller ones. Each strap allows you more fit control of the area where they’re situated.

It also comes with a forefront strap for those who think the space for toe dexterity is a bit too much. One thing though, I noticed that after repeated use, the materials begin to soften, which makes you feel your feet are cushioned with feather beds (this doesn’t eliminate the feeling of firmness I initially mentioned), which I think is another plus for the Lebron soldier 11.

Lebron soldier 11’s lockdown is also great; the new strap design really helps with that, although you might find it a bit difficult to put on. I never felt any side to side movements, neither have I ever slipped on my heel, not once. 

Support

The Lebron Soldier 11 also takes this from the soldier 10, not that the Soldier 10 didn’t have good support, it did. The platform of the soldier 10 is slightly narrower than the soldier 11, and the zoom is slightly more protruded, all to give you a good sense of balance.

The soldier 11 features a wider base that gives you more support security than the soldier 10, but it comes at a price – the wider platform it sits on makes the shoe seem a bit bulkier than its predecessor. The outsole is really flat and it is equipped with a double outrigger which also adds to its stability.

It also has sculpted collar padding, plus an external heel counter that combines well with the outriggers. With so much attention paid to the sole, it would have been easy for Nike to overlook the upper, but they didn’t – the upper is also quite supportive, and I never detected a trace of stretching.

Cushion

Honestly, I don’t care how well a shoe fits, or how much stability it affords me; if it feels uncomfortable whenever I play, then I’m getting rid of it. One time when I played with a pair of shoes that chaffed my heel every time I lifted the foot, it was hell, I’ve vowed never to “endure” an uncomfortable shoe.

I’ve been using my soldier 11 for a while now, that says a lot about its cushion. I must say, Nike took their time on this one, the material used is lighter and not as dense as in the previous versions. Not much different from the Soldier 10 though, just some adjustments on the zoom (protrudes slightly more than in the soldier 10).

Although we still don’t get a “bouncing castle” the zoom compresses enough for you to feel it more acutely than in the Lebron soldier 10. The soldier 11 has better impact protection, and a general “springy” feel to it.

Overall

The soldier 11 is far better footwear than the LeBron soldier 10, no doubt, but I don’t really see anything special about it. I’ve tested it and I can’t say it gave me any superpowers, the material is more or less the same with soldier 10 – except for few changes, the design is better, of course, one or two minor changes and the traction problem is slightly improved.

It is still a great shoe though, very solid, some of those minor fixes have come in really handy, but I hope Nike does a better job with the traction. Maybe a change in the pattern or something, as long as I don’t trip over my feet ever so often.

Final Verdict

It’ll be unfair of me to judge the LeBron soldier 11 a horrible buy, it’s definitely better than your average sneakers, but it’s nothing extraordinary. If you want a pair of solid shoes to last you through the season, you might want to give the LeBron soldier 11 a chance, it’s solid enough.

I’d say comparing the soldier 11 to the soldier 10 is a bit unfair, LeBron soldier 10 was so bad its progeny couldn’t be worse. Nike wasn’t going to make something as bad or worse, not after the sort of review the zoom 10 got. But that is neither here nor there, what matters is; the LeBron soldier 11 wasn’t anywhere near a bad shoe – definitely not the best ever made, but it deserves some respect.

The price is also an advantage; you’ll be hard pressed to find shoes on this level at that price. Some say the starting price for the regular version could do with a slight reduction, largely because the materials used were of regular quality. I guess it all depends on perspective.