The ultimate iteration of the Predator’s return. Technology derived from several years of PureControl has been combined with the modern day direction for the Predator to create a boot worthy of the iconic lineage. Adidas has made sure to throw their full weight behind the Predator, and they’ve done an incredible job ensuring that this boot is worthwhile.
The adidas Predator starts off with an incredible fit that is achieved through the PureCut laceless sock that makes up the body of this boot. Crafted to allow your foot in the boot, but to hold tightly to your foot throughout play, it’s the most advanced laceless set-up that adidas has given us yet. Blending together with the PrimeKnit upper to create an elite level of comfort, it’s no wonder that this boot is such a simple choice for boot enthusiasts the world over. Add in everyone’s favorite insole material in adidas BOOST, and the boot practically sells itself!
Once you get over the comfort and start playing, the PrimeKnit upper and control elements on the boot really shine. Providing a nice cushioned feel on the ball, you get that fantastic Predator set-up that really helps this boot stand out when you strike the ball. It all sits on top of a Sprintframe sole plate and stud pattern that makes sure that you don’t have any worries about your traction when you’re looking to dominate with the top-of-the-line Pred.
For those looking to dominate with a boot that has laces, the Predator 18.1 might be the best option on the market. Essentially offering every aspect of the Predator 18+, but with the ability to customize the fit with the laces, the 18.1 is a heavy hitter in an extremely congested marketplace. You still get the PureCut sock, the PrimeKnit upper, the control elements, the Sprintframe, and the absolutely gorgeous look that it all brings together.
The only real difference is the lack of Boost used in the insole, so it’s truly going to come down whether you’re wanting to jump into the next level world of technology that adidas has on offer OR if you’re wanting to get the best of both worlds by slapping on laces. Perhaps the best take-down option on the market, the 18.1 was a favorite for Hunter and is a worthwhile option for anybody shopping for new boots.
The first big step in the Predator line-up comes in the form of the Predator 18.2. Adidas wants to still provide fans with the ability to experience the latest and greatest in Predator mania, but allow folks to keep most of their cash in their wallet. In order to do that, adidas has altered a few of the major aspects, but retained the overall feel of the boot.
The PureCut sock on the upper models is now more of a neoprene feel, but you still get the lockdown and feel that players are looking for with modern boots. Just like the 18.1, the 18.2 allows you to get a customized fit combining the stretch of the collar and the laces.
The upper is crafted with Primemesh that’s been combined with Controlskin that isn’t quite as comfortable as PrimeKnit, but still allows you to get a good feel for the ball whenever you’re making quick movements or looking for a quick pass. The soleplate doesn’t have the same build as the 18.1 and 18+, but the stud layout stays the same.
The 18.3 follows the trend of most adidas bottom tier boots in that the boot looks like it fits with the Predator line, but it is significantly lower on the totem pole in terms of quality. The padding is a fair bit thicker than the other boots on this list, and it helps give the boot some form of comfort, but ends up making the boot oddly stiff when it combines with the soleplate. It also means that your touch isn’t going to be quite as pure as it could be with an upper echelon boot.
The 18.3 does offer a collar extension, but you should expect this type of collar to feel like the old thick socks your grandparents tend to wear. However, it is incredible that adidas has chosen to add a heightened collar to the 18.3. Surprisingly, you still get the same stud layout on the 18.3 as all the other models. The soleplate will feel a bit stiffer and you don’t get the same heel counters as the upper versions, but the stud shape and position of the studs remains the same throughout the Predator line.
A World Cup year is always full of surprises, but it would take something massive to overshadow the Predator and everything that it carries along with it. Adidas will certainly be aware that their headliner will need to be at its best when the summer rolls around, so we’re anxious to see what surprises the three stripes will have in store for the Predator in 2018. Also be sure to check out where the adidas Predators are ranked among all soccer cleats by our friends over at Run Repeat!