First Impression: Nike Zoom Rookie (LWP)

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Nike’s latest Hybrid combines two of the most popular Flight models in history with some extra flare. Is this an upgraded performance beast or a ploy to get Penny fans to spend their hard earned cash? Find out my First Impression on the Rookie before I head out on-court with them…

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Traction- Nike could have easily gone the ‘story telling’ route with these, yet they didn’t. They went with Herringbone which is awesome. Not only did they use Herringbone, it’s very soft and flexible… flexible in the sense that the traction pattern moves a little bit like a brushes bristles which should make for a nice base when on the go.

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Cushion- I’m a little disappointed with the cushion to be perfectly honest. I can’t feel any Zoom Air in the forefoot (can’t see it either) but I did find a Zoom unit in the heel. This Zoom unit is oddly shaped and I couldn’t really feel it under foot. Usually the Zoom located in the heel looks like a ‘U’ shape while these feature a thin rectangle shaped unit. The Foamposite usually has some period of adjustment with break in time allowing everything to properly mold to your foot… I’m hoping this is the case with these because as of now, they really aren’t that comfortable from a cushion standpoint.

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I’m hoping you can see what I mean in the images…

Material- Foamposite located in the heel and forefoot while Nubuck breaks up the two sections. An inner boot made of mesh, which we’ve all seen numerous times with Foamposite sneakers, has also been used. Materials are nice and I have no complaints so far.

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Fit- This is another area of concern. They are very stiff, which most Foamposite based sneakers are, but these are very stiff. It will require quite a bit of time to not only break in but also allow the material to mold to my foot shape. The heel is a key issue as I can’t get that area to lockdown. I even tried on a ½ size smaller to see if that helped… it didn’t, I just felt my toes being crushed in the front of the toe box.

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The black pods found on the heel and forefoot are a nod to the Air Flight One and serve as support for both the ankle and lateral forefoot area. This is nice and all, but I can actually feel the forefoot pod pressing against my foot which is pretty uncomfortable as well. Looks like I’m going to have to break out some thick socks to try and calm down any friction or pressure points it’ll give me.
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Ventilation- There isn’t much other than the mesh inner boot. This is normal for a Foamposite based sneaker and it is a necessary evil that comes with the material. It won’t mold to your foot if all of your heat escapes so this is an area that won’t be judged harshly.
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Side Note- I found this interesting. The insole is just your basic insole found in most Nike products while Nike’s performance products have been featuring Ortholite insoles. While the box is a dead giveaway, comes in a standard Nike Sportswear Box, this Ortholite-less sneaker screams casual use only to me… this is disappointing as we have seen Penny rocking these to hoop in which gives off the impression that these are basketball sneakers. Not to mention the combination of two highly popular performance models that make up the shoe were used as inspiration.

Below you will see some side by side shots of the Rookie & Nike Air Go LWP. I wish I had the Air Flight One but I don’t have a pair at this time… next year they will Retro so I’ll have my chance soon enough.  Thanks for reading all of this and stay tuned for more!

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Posted on: November 23, 2011 /// No Comments

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