Performance Review: Under Armour Micro G Black Ice

Nov 24, 2010 | George Kiel III |

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Under Armour’s apparel has become a staple product in many equipment rooms worldwide for multiple sports. It’s form-fitting wear is preferred by many athletes and is considered a top-notch creation to most; however, many wondered if its high-standard apparel capabilities would also be incorporated into its new basketball sneaker line.

Since last season, Brandon Jennings and Under Armour, together, created a viral buzz around its newly-designed basketball sneaker line that debuted this past October. The Under Armour Micro G Black Ice, Brandon Jennings’ first signature sneaker, is the lead model in the new line. Would this highly-anticipated basketball sneaker perform as well as the brand’s apparel?

We decided to put the Under Armour Micro G Black Ice through our performance test to see how Under Armour chose to attack the sneaker industry with its lead design. Take a look at our Under Armour Micro G Black Ice Performance Review Scorecard and check out our in-depth analysis of this sneaker, along with detailed photos.

Performance Review: Under Armour Micro G Black Ice

Strengths:
Breathability
Lightweight Capacity
Durability
Forefoot Stability

The game of basketball is steadily evolving to say the least. Although fundamentals are still an intricate aspect of the game, players are now starting to rely more on their athletic characteristics such as jumping ability, speed and quickness. The newly-designed Under Armour Micro G Black Ice is undoubtedly ideal for the player who depends on these elements to have an edge over their opponents such as Brandon Jennings.

The Under Armour Micro G Black Ice is created in the mold of many of the performance-based sneakers on the market, currently, in regards to its lightweight-based makeup; however, its build consists of some very distinctive attributes. One can credit the newly-developed Micro G? technology for its seemingly weightless, low profile base. The wearer can maneuver rather quickly and is able to cover a lot of ground at a faster pace thanks to the aforementioned technology. Additionally, the full-length Micro G? midsole/molded insole compliments one’s quickness and speed on the court.

In addition to the Black Ice’s player-friendly lightweight build, this performance-based sneaker also specializes in breathability. The overall Under Armour brand is best known for its introduction of form-fitting, moisture-absorbing apparel that is designed to be worn under sportswear. The same characteristics were applied to the Micro G Black Ice, as it contains a limitless amount of perforations on the upper for extreme breathability. The age-old HeatGear? technology also aids to this shoe’s inside comfort level. The HeatGear? technology acts as a second skin layer and soaks up the excess moisture much like the majority of Under Armour’s apparel. In other words, the Black Ice maintains its extraordinary lock down support, all while not completely hugging one’s foot. This is what truly sets the Under Armour Micro G apart from other sneakers on the market and makes it truly a one-of-a-kind sneaker.

Lastly, this shoe contains a great amount of forefoot stability thanks to the adjustable forefoot strap that sits in between the toe box and the midfoot (the strap is inspired by the band on Brandon Jennings’ favorite watch). This is another interesting feature on this seeing that the game of basketball is played on your toes instead of your heel. When adjusted tightly, this attribute acts as a seatbelt to your forefoot allowing one to make sharp, quick moves without unwanted sliding of the foot.

Weaknesses:
Ankle Support
Traction
Heel Stability

Earlier, we mentioned the full-length Micro G? midsole/molded insole allowing an advantage in regards to quickness; yet, at the same time, it loses some credibility in regards to comfort level. At times, the Under Armour Micro G Black Ice fit very irregularly, and it didn’t possess much of a unison with the surface. Also, it seems as if the traction level suffers because of the Micro G? midsole. This shoe would have possibly scored higher in the comfort and traction departments had it featured a herringbone-patterned surface. Nevertheless, its Brandon Jennings inspired ‘shattered ice’ traction pattern is definitely a winner in the style category; however, a herringbone patterned sole would have been better performance-wise.

Secondly, the emphasis applied on the forefoot is not evenly distributed throughout the entire sneaker. As we mentioned earlier, the watch band inspired forefoot strap is an exceptional characteristic for forefoot stability, but there are no special traits that support the ankle and heel. The unique cut at the heel of the shoe leaves the ankle/heel somewhat vulnerable and can possibly expose those respective areas of the foot in a harmful manner.

Overview: We must applaud Under Armour for SUCCESSFULLY placing its mark in the sneaker industry with the Micro G Black Ice. This sneaker is simply a ‘power package’ as it possesses beneficial design cues, such as Micro G? and HeatGear?? that can aid comfort, quickness, speed, among other athletic traits. That said, it should definitely be in the weekly rotation of those who play basketball consistently.

The Under Armour Micro G Black Ice is available now at Under Armour’s online store, among other retailers, for $110.

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