Lifetime 71522 Portable Basketball System Review

Best Basketball Hoops Rating

Lifetime 71522 Portable Basketball System:    8.1/10

Main Features

  • One of the most expensive Lifetime portable basketball systems
  • Power lift height adjustment system allows for the hoop’s height to be adjusted from 7.5 feet to 10 feet
  • The Lifetime 71522 Portable Basketball System has a 54 Inch acrylic backboard that has a steel frame and padding that aligns the bottom of the backboard
  • Has a double compression spring Slam-It breakaway rim that is made of solid steel
  • Manufactured in the USA and comes with a five year warranty

We often suggest Lifetime portable basketball hoops to families who are looking for a decent hoop for their kids to learn the game of basketball on.  However, the Lifetime 71522 Portable Basketball Hoop is a little different than many of the other Lifetime basketball systems.  This hoop has a slightly higher price point than many Lifetime systems, and has several features that you will not find on the cheaper portable basketball hoops.  Let’s dig a little deeper on some of the things that make the Lifetime 71522 a higher quality portable basketball hoop.

The Lifetime 71522 features a double spring Slam-It rim

When it comes to the Lifetime 71522 it really begins with the Slam-It double compression spring rim made of solid steel.  Many Lifetime hoops come with the two springs but they are left exposed and are more likely to rust over time due to the elements of weather.  On the Lifetime 71522 Portable Basketball System this is not the case as the springs are housed within a metal cover to keep them protected and lasting significantly longer than other breakaway rims.

A rather weak point for this portable basketball hoop is that it relies on a three piece support pole system.  Three piece support pole systems are generally found on lower end portable basketball hoops and are more susceptible to shaking when the basketball hits the system during a shot.  In the future, we would like to see Lifetime upgrade the Lifetime 71522 Portable Basketball System so that it came with a two piece support system to reinforce stability.  However, there are still some nice stability features within the support pole system in an attempt to make up for this.  In particular we love that there are two braces reinforcing the backboard to help offset some of the vibrations you would otherwise get.

The 54 inch acrylic backboard is one of the nicest backboards you will see on a Lifetime portable basketball hoop.  Many of Lifetime’s cheaper systems feature polycarbonate backboards, which while stronger than acrylic, do not offer the same level of performance. We do like how the backboard is steel-framed which should increase the life of the system.  Another nice feature of the Lifetime 71522’s backboard is the padding that lines the bottom of the system.  This is an enhanced safety feature that will help to prevent injuries and cuts that might result from hands and arms hitting the bottom of the backboard.

Portable basketball systems all generally include some sort of base that keeps the basketball hoop in place and stable.  The Lifetime 71522 Basketball System features a 35 gallon polyethylene material base.  Because of the upright design of this system we wish this would be increased to hold 40 gallons or more which would further reduce the risk of tipping.  We do not recommend kids of adults hang on the rim of this system due to this.  For transportation this base works nicely as it features two wheels in the front to allow you to slightly tip the hoop and move it your new preferred location.

What We Like About This Hoop

  • Acrylic backboard material is a step up from the polycarbonate backboards featured on most Lifetime portable basketball systems
  • The wheels on the base of the Lifetime 71522 Portable Basketball System make moving this hoop significantly easier than other portable basketball systems
  • We like the cover over the two compression springs on the Slam-It rim.  This will help prevent rusting over time.
  • The reinforcement braces behind the backboard help to keep the Lifetime 71522 XL resistant to shaking when shots hit the system from deep
  • Power lift height adjustment system is super easy to use and allows for kids of all sizes to get in on the action
  • 5 year limited warranty will help to make you feel even more confident when purchasing this basketball system

What Would Make This Hoop Better

  • The 35 gallon base should be increased to 40 gallons to reduce the chance for tipping as the Lifetime 71522 Portable Basketball System has more upright design than other systems
  • Three piece support systems are generally found on cheaper portable basketball systems and are more likely to shake and be less responsive overall
  • We would like to see the support pole redesigned to be at an angle (See the Spalding 60 Inch Portable Basketball System for an example) to reduce the chances of running into the pole during a layup or dunk

We have to admit that we are pretty impressed by what Lifetime has been able to accomplish at a reasonable price point with the 71522 Portable Basketball Hoop.  Being one of the higher price portable offerings from Lifetime there are some features on this system that you will not get from the other cheaper basketball hoops.  A great middle road hoop for most this system will meet the needs of the vast majority of users.  Only those who are very serious about the game and are looking for a top performing system such as the Goalsetter All-American may be disappointed with the performance of the Lifetime 71522 Portable Basketball System.


Nick Daniels

Nick is has been a student of the game of basketball most of his life. He loves writing about all things hoops and basketball gear.