Nike designer Jason Petrie and the NBA’s greatest player this side of the century, LeBron James, share a tight relationship.
The powerhouse duo returns this year to collaborate on for ultimate basketball shoe, the LeBron 16. The four-time NBA MVP recipient’s primary need this year was to balance support and weight in his kicks, the key to it all being the upgraded ‘Battleknit 2.0.’
With an emphasis on tensile strength to cope with extreme lateral force, Petrie praises the knit team at Nike as “geniuses.” He admits, though, he doesn’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.”
Observers will also note the noticeably lower cut of the collar which was a direct request of James, going against the common high support around the ankle found in most court shoes.
“I wanted to get a little faster, ride a little bit closer to the court and be a little bit more dynamic.” says James. Paired with an evolved Max Air cushioning underfoot, the Lebron 16 boasts phenomenal support for its lower height.