Review: Nike Zoom LeBron IV


The Nike Zoom LeBron IV marked the return of Nike’s Foamposite technology, which had been shelved for a few years until these kicks hit the market.  Foamposite allows for a single, molded polyurethane upper that is intended to literally mold to the wearer’s foot and provide unmatched support.  Using this technology also negates the need to stitch or glue multiple pieces of material together to form the upper.

While Foamposite is very durable and will not lose the natural shape of your foot from playing a lot, one of the main cons is the affect it has on a sneaker’s weight.  At 20.8 ounces, the LeBron IV was undoubtedly amongst the heaviest shoes (along with the LeBron III) the King has ever worn – something even he had a minor complaint about.

'Fruity Pebbles'

The upper on this shoe certainly reflects the silhouette of the Nike Air Foamposite kicks, but boldly stands out in its own right as well.  You can see that there are multiple air vents along the medial and lateral sides for optimal breathability and three elastic straps above the tongue that were meant to lock down the foot.  There is also a full heel-to-toe Zoom air bag and a ¾ carbon fiber spring plate in the midsole with both features providing maximum cushioning and stability.  The Nike Free inspired herringbone traction pattern was also indented to make the outsole enviably flexible while enhancing quick cuts and change of direction. To top things off, a dynamic fitted foot sleeve makes sure that the wearer’s foot will not suffer any slippage during use and an ankle strap assures added protection against injury.

The Nike Zoom LeBron IV, while a tad on the heavy side, truly reflects the ability of Nike’s designers (Ken Link in this case) to take calculated risks in trying to develop better high performance basketball shoes each new year.  Link may not have hit a walk-off homerun with these kicks, but LeBron did rock these for most of the 2006-2007 campaign in which he led the Cavaliers to their first ever NBA Finals appearance in only his fourth pro season.  Regardless, these sneakers were a considerable hit with the King’s legion of fans and gave Foamposite technology a chance to shine underneath one of the brightest spotlights the NBA has.

Watch one of the entertaining commercials for the Fours that showcases LeBron acting skills!

[Original Release: 2006; Weight: 20.8 oz; Players: LeBron James]

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