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Nike LeBron 9 Performance Review

Here is my review on the LeBron 9.

Hit the jump for more…

Traction — 8/10
Cushion — 8.5/10
Material — 8/10
Fit — 7/10 (Runs Small, go up ½ sz)
Ventilation — 6.5/10 (Low Ventilation needed in my opinion for the Pro-Combat Material)

Overall — 7.6/10

Value — Priced at $170, there are far better options available for most player types and positions. If you enjoyed playing in the LeBron 8 P.S. then you will enjoy these as well. In my opinion, these are better suited for larger caliber players with explosive power or smaller players who may not be as quick and a bit on the heavy side as far as muscle build is concerned. Overall decent shoe… just not made for everyone, they were specifically made for one person, LeBron James. If you compare yourself either playing style or built wise, this is a good option for you.

  1. just realized something about the lebron 9 after playing in them again today. first time i played in them, i used my kentucky pair. that’s when i encountered the tongue edges rubbing against your foot (right shoe for me) as well as the hard tpu jabbing into your big toe (left shoe for me). but today, i used my ohio state pair. surprisingly, i did not encounter any of those problems. it was my first time to use the ohio state pair for ball but i have broken them in since i wear them casually a lot. i decided to compare both pairs and noticed that the tongue on my ohio states is shorter in length than that on my kentuckys. also, the inside of the ohio states at the toebox was pretty smoothly and evenly rounded while the kentuckys weren’t as even (hope you get what i mean). this got me thinking that the problems on the 9 might be pair specific. maybe i got better quality ohio states over kentuckys or something like that. i’ve got the cannon, china, and freegums as well, and have only experienced the tongue problem on my chinas and kentuckys, and the toebox thing only on the kentuckys. nike needs to step up quality control if that’s the case. just wanted to share! hope this helps those who want to use the 9s for ball (i personally love them!) try a pair on before you buy! 😀 get better, nightwing! eagerly awaiting more reviews!

    1. Its possible. Ive received a ton of messages about the same issues with the toe and tongue area, one person played in them to the point where their toe nail fell off… They are a good shoe but like most shoes, they have some issues to deal with.

    2. I had a pair for a while but just played in them for my first time yesterday. I have the same exact issues as stated. The sides of the tongue on the right shoe are very uncomfortable when tied up. It dug into the top of my foot and it hurt so much I had to push the sides out of the shoe. I also felt my left big toe jam into the front toe box a few times.

  2. First, I very much liked your review of the shoe. Thank you.

    I’m looking for the most cushion possible since I have plantar fasciitis on my right foot so I looked at the LeBron 9’s yesterday. The first characteristic that jumped at me was how unflexible this shoe was.

    Definitely a shoe that you should not play on for too long at one time until it’s well broken in. Otherwise, you will find your feet hurt.

    pantxo in Miami

    1. Thanks!

      If you need heel cushion id suggest trying on the CP3.V, they will amaze you with how responsive and cushioned a foam can be.

  3. i bought mine a couple of days ago..no deadspace in the toe and its true to size for me..it is in miami nights CW.i definitely can feel the zoom.and its lockdown! goodness!
    only issue is the cover in the pro combat material is rubbing with the edge of the tongue.it is damaged now.and you should buy EXTRA laces because the independent harness keeps rubbing the laces.

    i chose this over the wade 2’s because in wades, i experienced heel slippage..not good for a slasher.but i was surprised with its responsiveness..lebron 9 IMO, fits me well.the cut of the shoe is perfect for me.cushioning is great.

    great reviews man and will follow on your reviews!

    1. Well i dont know much about weak ankles… From what i figure youd need some sort of brace to restrict your ankles movement so you dont end up rolling it.

    1. I play 1&2 guard so whatever shoe i enjoy would be a good fit for guards. Just take a look back and past reviews and teasers and you will see which ones i have enjoyed.

  4. I have a pair of Freegum Lebron 9’s and I have to agree with your review. The fit is quite small, but I’m hoping that breaking them in will fix the problem. I wore them to the court fresh out of the box, so I expected them to be a little uncomfortable at first. The heel and back of the shoe fit perfectly and had great cushion. I noticed that the front was stiff, but for me it didn’t feel awkward like it did for you. The problem I had was that I slipped bad at least twice when making lateral moves right at the inside of the ball of my foot. Was so bad, I literally fell over and I am a pretty coordinated guy.

    Also, the tongue fits terribly for me on the interior side. When I lace up, it digs into my ankle and I’m constantly trying to adjust it. Compared to my Jordan 2012s or 2011s for that matter, the comfort and grip just aren’t there. It’s a beautifully made shoe though… very high quality. Perhaps with more playing time they will grow on me, but right now, I have better options available to me. I’m wearing the Jordan 2012s UNC colorway and the Jordan XI Concords most of the time and they are much better IMO. I’m testing out the Candy Cane Jordan XIVs now also, but so far I’m not as impressed as some other people.

    Thanks for the reviews… they are really informative. I also have a thing for testing out footwear.

  5. Hi nightwing. First of all I would like to thank you for spending so much time and effort for doing all this reviews. You should get paid 🙂

    The Lebron 9’s are on discount at my place right now at around USD100. I am seriously thinking of getting them. I’m just a casual player. Not a serious basketballer or anything. I only play outdoors though in a hot climate all year round. Would this shoe hold up fine or will the soles give up very quickly?

    Other shoes that are within the same price range is Adidas D. Rose 2.5 and Nike Zoom Hyper Chaos. The former looks pretty fragile to me to be used outdoors. Is that a correct observation?

    I’m not too sure on the Hyper Chaos. Like the design but I guess Lebron 9 is more value for the money since it was Nike’s flagship shoe.

    If the Lebron 9’s are not suited for outdoor courts, can you recommend me some others?

    Many thanks in advance

    1. dang lucky you, I wish i can still cop a 9 for such a cheap price.

      im not nightwing, but one shoe that is built for outdoor playing is the hyperfuse 2012, that shoe is hella sturdy.

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