Bad Boy is a lifestyle brand in the alternative and extreme sports lane. They put roots down in San Diego, CA back in 1982, and started sponsoring fighters in the 90s. Greats such as Rickson Gracie, Vitor Belfort, Mark Kerr, and Antonio Rodrigo Nogieira have all donned the iconic bad boy Vale Tudo style shorts, and Bad Boy continues to support top level champions in MMA and BJJ. They are one of the very few suppliers of MMA clothing and gear to show real staying power with sponsoring fighters and introducing new products after the Reebok/UFC collaboration, sponsoring UFC heavyweight champ Stipe Miocic, and welterweight title challenger Demian Maia.
Upon reading MMA Gear Addict’s article on top pros’ favorite boxing gloves, I saw that Stipe Miocic lists the Bad Boy Legacy gloves as his favorite. I searched Bad Boy’s website and took a look at them, I read that these gloves made from top grain cowhide leather, and five layers of foam along with a moisture wicking soft liner. I decided on a set of 16 oz lace ups of the Legacy 2.0 in black, retail price for these is currently $129.99 (as of July 12, 2017).
The gloves arrived in less than a week, and they came enclosed in probably the most useable container in any gloves that I’ve purchased, a good sized mesh zippable bag, an unexpected plus. Upon first inspection, the leather is very high quality, the matte finish leather leads into a glossy honey-comb print at the fist, with the Bad boy logo displayed smoothly up the pinky side of the back fist. These are one of the best looking gloves you will find. When turning the glove over, I noticed a healthy section of breathable mesh on the palm side. My set of gloves showed no stitching errors.
I prefer a soft liner to the slick nylon style, and the Legacy 2.0 gloves have a good feeling liner, the material is soft, and the interior padding does a good job of allowing you to slide your hand into the glove with no stops or tugs needed. Just upon initial inspection and feel, they seemed to be in the proper price range, and could stand head to head with any glove in the $120-$170 price range.
After sliding my hands in and lacing these up tight, I noticed that the web of my hand, where my thumb attaches, was firmly against the threshold inside the glove, though my thumb was not at the end of the space for it, I was concerned. Once I made a fist and used the gloves, I experienced no issues in bottoming out that portion, my hand wasn’t irritated, and I never thought about it during use. The punching surface is a gradual curve from the knuckles to fingertips, there is no big bulge at the impact point, it’s gradual again, consistent from the pointer knuckle to the pinky.
I have always thought that a softer leather on a glove makes for an easier break in, and these Bad Boy Legacy 2.0 gloves did not change my opinion. The quality of the leather really is great, I did a few sets of push-ups with the gloves on and laced, hit the bag to gauge if these would be safe for my sparring partner, and I’m sure I could have pulled them out of the package and sparred right away. This is not the case with quite a few gloves, and though it may be just a personal preference, I’d rather have gloves that perform this way out of the box. I have heard the opinion that this trait on a glove leads to early deterioration of the padding inside, but I don’t find that to be accurate.
I like to hit pads, different heavy bags, and different training partners, just so I can get a good feel for the glove in all circumstances. Another factor, that I don’t get to test all year round, is that I used these gloves in some hot training sessions, and found myself thankful for the abundance of ventilation. Not only does it help keep your hand a little cooler, but these dry out from sweat much quicker, that keeps your gloves from smelling and will most likely keep you in the same set of gloves much longer.
The wrist support is great, sometimes gloves with the advantage of being soft enough to be kind to your training partner, sacrifice good wrist protection, it may be because of the lace up enclosure, but I experienced no issue with wrist protection.
Bad Boy explains on their website that the slick hexagon or honey comb look graphics are not just a graphic, it refers to ‘Hex Foam’, the outermost of the 5 layers of variable density padding, which is claimed to spread and absorb impact. One thing you don’t have to worry about with these gloves is that it is the same as other gloves with the only difference being graphics or colors. Bad Boy has designed these from the ground up and every part of the glove is unique.
I put these gloves through a minimum of 150 rounds of use. They are even a little more comfortable now that they are fully broken in, and the graphics have held up extremely well, and they still smell like leather, not sweat! The Bad Boy Legacy 2.0’s slide on and off as easily as you can expect from a lace-up glove, though the liner that I love so much tends to give a sweaty hand a little harder of a time getting all the way in. The padding is good for sparring partners, and I only experience sore knuckles after quite a few full power shots consecutively on the hardest heavy bag I have. That is the closest thing to a gripe that I have for these.
There are 2 areas where I can say the Bad Boy Legacy 2.0 gloves are clear class winners:
- First; the ventilation. I estimate that half of the surface of these gloves is perforated leather or breathable mesh, which makes it a perfect summertime glove. Even if you train in an air conditioned environment, your hands and gym bag will be very thankful if you go with the Legacy gloves.
- Second; the finish material honestly surprised me. The leather is the best of any glove I have, and I own 5 pairs of boxing gloves in this price range. The interior liner is comfortable and the moisture wicking is no joke. This makes for the most comfortable experience.
Overall, the Bad Boy gloves are fantastic. They do a lot of things well, nothing poorly, and they really shine in a couple areas. The look is slick and understated, I really like how the graphics accent the high quality leather. Bad Boy proves you can make an eye catching glove without neon colors and over the top graphics. They are right at home for the price of $129.99 (as of July 12, 2017), definitely worth the price and will stand the test of time and many training sessions. The Bad Boy Legacy 2.0 lace-ups will stay in my gym bag for a long time.
- High Grade Leather construction
- Soft moisture wicking liner
- Good ventilation
- Great all-purpose glove
We thank the good folks at Bad Boy for providing these gloves to review. This did not influence the outcome of the review, which was written after several months and over 150 rounds of training.