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The first shoe and one of the most popular models under LeBron James’s Soldier line, the Nike LeBron Soldier 1 was initially released in 2007 and is retroed in 2018. The shoe was worn during James’s first championship appearance against the San Antonio Spurs. The King’s Cleveland Cavaliers lost that year, but little did everyone know that that was only the first of LeBron James’s several NBA Finals appearances.
Cushion. Embedded within the forefoot and heel sections of the Phylon midsole are two Zoom Air units. This technology involves tensile fibers in a sturdy polyurethane pouch. When pressure is applied, the fibers compress to absorb impact energy. Upon takeoff, the fibers spring back, creating a snappy and responsive feel.
Traction. The LeBron Zoom Soldier 1 Retro's outsole is articulated into different parts so that it splays and bends when the foot flexes, pretty much like what the Nike Free’s outsole does. Herringbone and diamond-shaped patterns are molded onto each of the segmented pods. These grooves provide friction against the court’s surface.
Length and Width. According to shoe testers, the Soldier 1 Retro runs large. They recommend going half a size down for a more snug fit. The shoe is wide-footer friendly.
Lockdown. The shoe’s primary source of lockdown is its traditional lacing system. The lace holes in the ankle collar can be adjusted depending on the desired fit and size of the player’s ankle. Secondary to that is the midfoot strap that runs across the top of the lace. It pulls both sides of the upper to create a tightly shut and compact shoe that’s ready for battle. The shoe also features an additional heel strap that reinforces the internal TPU heel cup.
Built like a luxurious tank, most of the shoe’s upper is outfitted with premium tumbled leather. For the straps and ankle collar, dyed nubuck is often used. Patent leather is added on the forefoot for a nice touch of detail. The largely Phylon midsole has two Zoom Air units, one at the forefoot and another at the heel.
Although far from the sleek and minimal silhouettes of today, the LeBron Soldier 1 Retro is said to be the best-looking shoe in the Soldier line. The shoe utilizes an effective color-blocking technique, accentuating the shape of the foot. Compared to the 2007 OG’s the Retro version does not have the word “WITNESS” printed on the lateral side of the shoe.
The 2007 release of the LeBron Soldier 1 debuted five original colorways, namely:
- Gray/White/Olive Green
- Navy Blue/White/Blood Red
Nike LeBron Soldier 1 Retro 25 Straight
To commemorate the 25 straight points that Lebron James scored in a game against the Detroit Pistons in the 2007 NBA Playoffs, these Nike shoes are rendered in the same colors as the pair that the All-Star player wore during that movie-ending game. Dressed in navy blue, white, and gold, these Nike basketball sneakers are sure to capture eyes on- and off-court.
Nike LeBron Soldier 1 Retro Desert Storm
Consistent with the military theme, the Soldier 1 was released in a camo printed upper that is perfect to wear with casual jeans and shirt. The shoe is primary composed of wheat-colored nubuck with hits of black and gold on its logo and brandings.
Nike LeBron Soldier 1 Retro Ohio State PE
Ohio is well-known to be LeBron James’s state of origin. Although he never played for his state’s university, many LeBron shoes feature a colorway doused in Ohio State University’s team colors. These exclusive LeBron James basketball shoes come in “Home” and “Away” versions that match the school’s official uniforms.