After releasing the Nike LeBron 16 in the first women’s-only pair of the LeBron James signature line, followed by a limited run of the ‘1 Thru 5’ that incorporated the popular ‘What The’ theme, the model is now set for a general release with the ‘Fresh Bred’ colorway.
Initially unveiled by James on his Instagram account, official images of the black/red version further shine a spotlight on the features and highlights his 16th signature sneaker.
The model introduces Battleknit 2.0, with the first iteration seen on James’ last signature shoe. The 2.0 version improves strength of the knit without sacrificing fit or functionality. “The knit team at Nike are geniuses,” designer Jason Petrie said.
“I don’t use that term lightly. They are mathematical artists and have created a new knit for the 16 that is strong enough to contain LeBron and successfully reduces any layers in the overall build that could slow him down.”
A difference from the LeBron 15, which was a one-piece upper is the LeBron 16 incorporates a traditional tongue setup. Moreover, whereas James historically has worn shoes that were high top, the LeBron 16 features more of a 3/4 cut.
“The first thing we wanted to do was get a little lower in the cut of the shoe,” James explained. “I wanted to get a little faster, ride a little bit closer to the court and be a little bit more dynamic.”
One holdover from the LeBron 15 is the cushioning setup — a Max Air platform — albeit with modifications and improvements. “LeBron liked the cushioning so much last year that we just focused on refining it,” Petrie said.
“For this [edition], we removed the tendril that connected the forefoot to the under-toe bag, and instead included an outrigger to create some additional support to complement the lower height.”
Personal details on the LeBron 16 include his logo on the tongue, embossed lion’s head on each of the heels, and No. 2 on the left shoe and No. 3 on the right to recognize the jersey number James has worn through much of his career and will continue to do so with the Los Angeles Lakers.
The Nike LeBron 16 ‘Fresh Bred’ colorway will launch on Nike.com and at select retailers Thursday, Sept. 20.