The Nike LeBron 13 raised more than a few eyebrows when it debuted back in October 2015. Its military boot-like construction garnered mixed reviews from casual and avid sneakerheads alike.
Many were turned off by its unusually-placed Hyperposite pieces and stiff one-booty design. Another discouraging factor was its $200 price tag. At that time, flagship sneakers from Adidas and Under Armour offered more flexibility and comfort for $70 less.
A resounding minority accepted the Nike LeBron 13 with an open mind. After a year of on-court use, it’s actually not as bad as naysayers made it out to be. There is even great value in copping a pair today.
The Nike LeBron 13 is the only one in its draft class that has yet to receive a sequel. Technically speaking, it is still the newest offering in the LeBron James signature line.
Not only that, its price tag has dropped significantly over the past year. Interested takers can buy a pair for as low as $80. Newer colorways retail for $120 at several Nike outlets in the U.S.
Sneakers don’t really have a fixed lifespan. Numerous factors affect how long they will last. As a rule of thumb, the more they are worn, the faster they bottom out.
Materials and design structure also play a huge role in overall durability. These Nike LeBron 13 excels in both these categories.
Nike LeBron 13 Materials
Its upper consists of a singular mesh wrap with no standard tongue. Hyperposite pieces are added to provide additional lockdown and support.
A major downside to this setup is that it makes the shoes feel restrictive and clunky. Fortunately, this is only in the beginning.
The Nike LeBron 13 will soften up within three days of non-stop play. It will maintain a good mix of protection and flexibility for a long period of time before eventually running its course.
Nike LeBron 13 Cushion
The Nike LeBron 13 features better implementation of the hexagon-shaped Zoom concept first introduced on the Nike LeBron 12. The newer model has less hexagonal Zoom pods than its predecessor, but aligns them better with the anatomy of the foot.
The ball of the foot is protected by three hexagonal Zoom pods while the largest unit, a 13mm Zoom bag, falls right below the heel. Bigger players will be able to feel the plush cushioning more than their lighter counterparts.
Nike LeBron 13 Traction
The blue translucent outsole on the Nike LeBron 13 is composed of multi-directional lines that act as cages for the Zoom pods. It grips well on clean to moderate surfaces, but will wear out easily on rough outdoor courts.
Those who wish to take the Nike LeBron 13 to the asphalt should buy the ones with solid white rubber outsoles. Prices between the two outsole versions aren’t too far off at this point.
Nike LeBron 13 Red Verdict
The Nike LeBron 13 lives up to its billing as a heavy-duty performer built for strong and athletic big men. Guards looking for maximum impact protection will be catered to as well. However, those who prefer a more flexible and lightweight ride should look someplace else.