ASICS are a company that are relatively new to the US market, with only a few boots released for players to choose from. But, what they have done well is create boots to match the expectations of top players! One of those boots is the Lethal Stats, a boot that incorporates Asics HG10MM heel technology and a mixed k-leather/synthetic upper. It makes for an interesting release, and since Asics are a company with a positive reputation for creating top-line running shoes, they need to be taken seriously.
For testing, I wore a size 9US in the Black/Wattle colorway.
It is actually important to start this review by detailing the raised heel gradient, so that you understand my comments in several sections below. In the heel of the soleplate, Asics has raised the boot by 10mm. The idea is that it reduces the angle at which your body impacts the ground, reducing stress on joints and avoiding over stretching muscles right through the leg. You also start at a very different position, almost in a sprinters pose, and this creates an opportunity to increase acceleration from the right take-off position. Through its advertising campaign, Asics focus on the fact that footwear has been stagnant for the past 30 years, and this technology revolutionizes the boot.
How Does It Feel?
In similar fashion to the Lethal Tigreor review, the raised heel is extremely unique and according to Asics ultimately does have its benefits – but you are going to need time to really adjust to what it offers. They felt slightly clumsy for the first few wears and there is a window of re-training that you need to go through. Your standing position is very different and causes you to position yourself slightly more forward than in a regular pair of boots. Even though it is only 10mm, you will notice a substantial difference toward a regular flat boot. All-in-all, I wore them in three training sessions before I even thought about taking them into a game. One area I encountered issues was actually striking the ball, as you end up connecting at a different angle, sometimes a little too far over the ball.
Having said all that, I am very impressed with what Asics are taking on, even if it is a controversial area. If you are up for the challenge of a new type of technology they are worth trying – just note that even after testing, I can’t back-up any of Asics claims about them improving pressure on joints etc. It doesn’t cause any discomfort, but does produce a longer break-in period as you transition.
Once you conquer the heel gradient, there is a lot of positives about the Lethal Stats. You are definitely getting a comfortable boot from first wear and their is no shortage of soft padding. The entire boot feels like a giant marshmallow on your feet. When you consider they weight in at 9.4oz and offer good touch, that marshmallow feel on the inside can only be a good thing!
The region I like most is around the ankle, where the padding sits comfortably against the foot and produces a confident fit. The suede lining through the heel is also another area I like, as it has a slightly rubber feel that grips your ankle, ensuring it really doesn’t move through wear. Asics include their own unique insole that is soft around the toe areas, while providing a firm feel from the midsole down through the heel.
The upper on the Lethal Stats is composed of a K-leather through the strike zone, and a synthetic leather called RhynoSkin encompassing the rest of the boot. RhynoSkin mimics the feel of real leather, but holds much better durability. It definitely doesn’t have any visual similarities to real leather and I did find it to be slightly stiff through the first few wears. The benefit of its inclusion is more support through the upper.
What differentiates these boots from the rest of Asics range is the stud configuration, which is designed for top-line traction. On the heel you get 5 conical studs, while there are a total of 13 strategically positioned, and very different studs placed through the front of the boot. It definitely makes them a very suitable option for the “Best Grip of the Year” as I found out through wear! When it comes to turf surfaces, they might actually stick a little too much and it takes time to adjust to it as you twist. But those of you who need or are looking for plenty of stability, they are a great option.
You get a pretty basic Asics look that has many similarities to most other boots in their line-up. The Black/Wattle colorway I tested offers a very professional look that will suit the no-nonsense type player, or anyone that wants to just get on with playing their game. Another option for players who need something a little brighter is the White/Black/Wattle colorway.
How Do They Fit?
Very much true to size and on par with most other boots on the market. They also offer a decently wide feet through the midfoot, giving you plenty of room for a comfortable fit.
The biggest negative is obviously the adjustment period to start, and to be honest I can’t see the technology working for all players. If you need a boot that works right now, these are not the right choice for you. It is very difficult to give any other negatives about a boot that offers great comfort and performance at a very affordable price range but if you are the type of player who holds visuals at a high level, the Lethal Stats holds a slightly tacky look and they don’t quiet seem like a top-line release.
To be honest, there are quiet a lot of similarities between the Lethal Stats and Lethal Tigreor and I would advise players who are on a tighter budget to stick to the Stats. For those looking to simply find a quality boot the differences between both leaves the Tigreor as the better release! I am impressed with the quality of boot produced by Asics and there is definitely room for them in the market. Players who want a durable and very well protected boot should definitely consider taking a look at what these boots offer – there are not many better value for money options out there. For around $110, they are a bargain! In terms of player position, these fit the hybrid mold and will be useful for all types of player on the field.
(*boots supplied for review by Asics. To note, you might notice some of the content surrounding technology is pretty similar to that of the Lethal Tigreor review.)