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Death of the T90, Birth of the Hypervenom!

Hypervenom vs T90 Laser

After a successful run with the Total 90 range, Nike has bid farewell to the power boot and replaced it with an “agility” boot – the Hypervenom.  The T90 was arguably Nike’s least popular model, so it isn’t a complete surprise that they replaced the range with the all new Hypervenom. But how does the Hypervenom compare to the power boot profile of the T90?  Nike made such drastic changes from a powerboot to the Hypervenom that it can’t even be considered a successor to the T90 but a total replacement.

[See: Nike Hypervenom Story]

When compared to the T90 the Hypervenom is definitely more in line with what we are used to seeing with the vapor range. The T90 was built like a tank and packed a punch with a solid upper and an aggressive shot shield. On the other hand we have the Hypervenom which is built like a corvette with a quilted-paper-towel upper. Fit wise the t90 is an ideal choice for the wide footed player while the Hypervenom fits more on the narrow side. In essence Nike have dropped their powerhouse boot for another feather weight.

There is nothing resembling the shot shield on the Hypervenom which instead has a textured honeycomb pattern across the forefoot- giving players better grip while dribbling. It is meant to act similarly to the dimpled upper we see on the Nike Mercurial Vapor IX. Also notable is the differences in the upper material.  The Nike T90 Laser IV featured a Kangalite and a synthetic upper to enhance touch.  The Hypervenom has NikeSkin, a soft supple mesh bound by a thin polyurethane film.  Nike Skin gives a more barefoot feel on the ball and is also seen on the Nike Bomba Finale II.  With weight becoming more and more important in the boot market, the Hypervenom weighs in at a very competitive 7.2 ounces, 3 ounces less than the T90! The outsole is designed for a faster penetration and a quicker release- helping players find space faster, it also features a split-toe crease in the plate to sync with the natural movement of the foot. The T90 out sole was more plain with minimal tech to the configuration.

Nike Hypervenom Phantom – Shop the full collection here
Nike T90 Laser IV – Shop the remaining pairs here

Hypervenom Phantom

Crimson T90 Laser

Ethan’s Take

Finally, the boot I have dreamed of is now available for purchase!  A boot with a textured upper that extends the length of the boot?  A 7.2 ounce weight?  It’s basically a dream come true from Nike.  If someone showed me a picture of these before they were released, I would think that they were the next generation Mercurial Vapor.  With speed boots increasing in popularity, Nike have executed the release perfectly. The T90 range was fading and Nike made the best move by replacing the range.  Nike has done a good job in marketing them – having players like Neymar sporting them on the pitch really contributes to the new boot hype.  One thing I will miss in the T90 is the protection, I’m worried that players will have to suffer through hard tackles.  But all things considered, a much needed change from Nike is finally complete.

Jim’s Take

I think that with this move Nike are making a mistake. Nike would have been better off introducing the Hypervenom as a completely new silo and advance the t90 to its next incarnation rather than replacing it. Ditching a power boot like the T90 for another speed boot when you already have the Mercurial is kind of counterproductive. The T90 may be the least successful out of the Nike silo but that could easily be fixed with a face lift. Speed boots may be popular but having a variety of boots to suite the playing style of a wider range of players is more important. The T90 loyal will now probably go either the way of the Tiempo, CTR or the Premier. Or maybe they will abandon Nike for the underrated Puma PowerCat, pretty much the only powerboot on the market. The Hypervenom by itself however is a pretty innovative boot,  I think that a few mercurial fans will be moving on to it as it takes the concept of the light weight vapor one step further. Also Neymar is reaching CR7 status so the fan boy’s will gladly swap their Mercs for the Venom.

What is your take on the move from the T90 to the Hypervenom?

Hypervenom vs T90 - What is you take?

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About Jim Gauthier

Jim is a a licensed massage therapist with a vast knowledge of anatomy and injury. When he is not healing people with his magical abilities, Jim's goal is to provide everyday players with in-depth knowledge from an amateur players perspective. Find him on his Facebook Page for any personal questions or injury help!

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10 comments

  1. I may not be fan of the Laser of late, but the Total 90 III was the first top tiered boot I had. The idea behind it and the marketing was great. Sometimes it's shitty to see successor's overtake the previous model, an entire line is even worse.

    I think both lines should be available, simply because both lines are different.

    • Indeed-it's even worse when a manufacturer 'reinvents' an existing a silo into something that is the antithesis of what it is – i.e. Predator becoming a control boot; that is wrong on so many levels. Adidas ought to have had the current Nitrocharge severe as the Predator and the LZ as the Adikontrol or something. That way they push the Speed, Heritage, Power and Control ranges to compete in the market. Another thought would be to have the Incurza aesthetics (as in the original Incurza) being the base for a Predator or having the Predator go back to a similar look/feel of its illustrious forebears in the Accelerator and the Precision.

  2. I’m sad to find out Nike is ditching T90 series. Maybe because it was too robust therefore people were not replacing them at a regular rate compared to the light weights. For someone who has wide feet and is EXTREMELY rough on boots T90 was the only boot that lasts for more than a year for me. In fact the most recent pair has been around for more than 4 years. I think it’s time for me to stock up on the discontinued model.

  3. I being a football player like neither the T90 nor the Hypervenom .I actually prefer adidas shoes like nitrocharge 1.0 and F-50 and even the Adizero F-10.

  4. So … once again, it is impossible for me to find cleats on the mass market that fit my wide, high volume, high instep feet. The Total 90s were great; T90 II was best, T90 III was okay. Looks like I am back to thinking about paying big bucks for wide Asics or Mizunos from Japan, or cherry-picking T90IIs on eBay when I can find them at a tolerable price.

    I am amazed that with this many people playing soccer all over the world, there still is really almost no choices for people whose feet are wider or taller in the middle. The Adidas Wide Fit is a joke! Yes, there is a little more room around the middle, but the toe box is still pathetically pointy, and the last really hasn't been widened … you just have a lot of your feet hanging over the sides of the shoe.

    • I absolutely agree on this post. Even though the football market is such a huge market, the range of football shoes available in the market is really narrow. It's really ridiculous to see that the big makers of soccer cleats are only focusing on fancy design and not considering real demand from customers. If you look at this post; http://pointeperfect.com/learn-your-foot-type-poi… you will be surprised to see how much effort are put to figure out the unique characteristics of different type of foot shape in dancing shoes market. I also, just like you, am suffering from the same problem. My feet are totally square shaped so the pathetically pointy shoes don't fit in at all and I should go 2 size up for that which decrease my speed and contact with the ball when I shoot. I am doing this as I prefer to have comfort touch on the ball but it is really pain in my ass. I don't even want to think about how much money I have invested for soccer cleats.

  5. I never really liked the hypervenom there's a lot of speed boots out there so why another speed boot?? Right now I'm using t90 I'm lucky I'm wearing it it helps me bring power to my kicks and its durable

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