This week we take a closer look and review the features of another classic, the Reebok Pump Omni Zone II. This sneaker was introduced in 1991 at the time when Reebok was dominating the footwear marketplace in the US. It was designed by Paul Litchfield, a key figure at Reebok who played a pivotal role in the development of the Pump technology, which was incorporated into various models like the Pump Fury, the Shaq Attaq and the Omni Lite

The Reebok Pump Omni Zone II was notably worn by several NBA players during the early 1990s when it was first released. One of the most prominent athletes associated with this sneaker was Dominique Wilkins, a Hall of Fame basketball player known for his time with the Atlanta Hawks.  Another one is Dee Brown from the Boston Celtics who wore it during the 1991 NBA Slam Dunk Contest. In one of the most memorable moments in dunk contest history, Dee Brown pumped up his Reebok Pump Omni Lite sneakers before attempting a dunk. What made it even more remarkable was that he covered his eyes with his forearm while dunking, creating the illusion of a “no-look” dunk. This innovative and theatrical dunk captivated the audience and judges, earning him the title of Slam Dunk Champion for that year.

The sneaker made a big comeback in 2021 with some OG colorways to celebrate 30 years since its release and several new colorways were introduced in the following years. The pair we came across was the “Wheat” edition released in 2023. When you get these out of the box it’s hard not to feel some nostalgia and anticipation. They feel very stable, durable and accommodating from the get go, while not as cushy as a pair of modern sneakers. If you like a snug fit you can adjust them as you like with the pump system. They are pretty heavy which is not too surprising given their leather upper and high top silhouette. Size 10.5 weighs just above 20oz. 

How They Fit 

They fit true to size so your usual Reebok size should work. The only time you may want to go half a size up is when you have wide feet. They feel quite comfortable from the get go, without much need to break them in. If you’re not sure about the size you need you can check out our Reebok size chart here.

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The upper of the Reebok Pump Omni Zone II is made of smooth, quality leather and some mesh panels. The toe box has the perforations we are used to seeing at the retros from the 90’s, which helps with the air flow. The side TPU pieces not only add cool looks to the shoe but also stability as they are made part of the lacing system for an enhanced lockdown. The main feature of the upper is of course the Pump technology which is located in the tongue and the heel area. It is made up of several air chambers that can be filled with air to add a more snug fit while a release valve, also located on the tongue can be used to release the air when needed. We did not play any basketball in these while we tested them for our Reebok Pump Omni Zone II review but it’s pretty obvious that they are more of a retro sneaker than anything else at this point. Overall, the upper encapsulates the era it originated from and continues to be celebrated for its unique aesthetics and performance features.

Sole Unit 

The Reebok Pump Omni Zone II sole unit in 2023 is mostly made of an EVA midsole that delivers good comfort and support. It is the same comfort that you get from any sneaker from that era, like the Nike Air Max 90. At its origin the shoe was equipped with the Hexalite cushioning system that is more of a design element in the newer versions. You can actually see it in the opening from the outsole but it’s more for decoration. The outsole boasts a durable rubber compound with a multidirectional traction pattern, ensuring optimal grip on various surfaces. Additionally, the sole unit’s design incorporates a sculpted midsole with strategically placed flex grooves to enhance flexibility and natural foot movement. 

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Bottom Line 

To conclude our Reebok Pump Omni Zone II review, this sneaker stands as a remarkable testament to athletic heritage and enduring style. While once revered as a pinnacle of performance in the basketball world, its role has evolved over time. Today, it has transitioned into a cherished retro sneaker, cherished more for its iconic design and casual appeal than its original purpose on the hardwood. It is a stylish, durable sneaker that makes for a great every day shoe to wear casually. If you want to play basketball in these you still can but of course there are other better options out there. The Air Jordan 38 is just one example.