8 Best Kobe Basketball Shoes In 2022

If you quickly want to know what my choice is for the best Kobe shoes, then I recommend the Nike Kobe 6 as the best one.

Kobe Bryant’s “Mamba Mentality” has influenced the playing mindset of several basketball players around the globe.

No wonder his signature sneakers are also widely known across several countries and continents.

But with the vast number of choices in the pool of Kobe sneakers, which one is the best?

I also have that question in mind, which is why I started to research about the best Kobe shoes.

In this article, I will be reviewing the following best Kobe shoes for basketball:

8 Best Kobe Shoes For Basketball

The Nike Kobe Line is one of the best sneaker lines in the market, as expected from one of the best players in the history of basketball, alongside Michael Jordan and Lebron James.

You can find several good pairs, from the Nike Kobe 1 to his retirement shoes, the Nike Kobe A.D.

But before that, he had his first signature model with Adidas, the Adidas KB8.

Do you want to play like Kobe Bryant? Pick from our TOP list the next basketball sneakers you should buy.

1. Nike Kobe 6 – Best Overall

Features

  • Low-cut
  • Snakeskin design
  • Two-layered memory foam
  • Phylon foam midsole
  • Zoom Air cushioning

Nike “Kobe” belongs to the company’s main line of sneakers the late superstar has.

The Kobe 6 is specifically designed for players in the guard positions. The “Black Mamba” is evident in this snakeskin-textured Kobe signature sneaker.

You can see the embodiment of the character of Kobe Bryant in this design by Eric Avar.

It is one of the greatest basketball shoes that are perfect for shifty players like him. Try it in a clean court, and you will experience its strong grip and great durability.

Since its launch, it has been rocking professional, amateur, and even local basketball courts. It is also priced right to make the most of your money!

Pros

  • Great traction
  • Durable
  • Sleek design
  • True to size
  • Great comfort

Cons

  • Easy to pick up dust
  • Only recommended for indoor use

2. Nike Zoom Kobe 4 – Best Value

Features

  • Low top
  • Narrow
  • Lunar foam forefoot
  • Zoom heel
  • Flywire material composition
  • Weight: 11.6 oz

For starters, Kobe Bryant dropped 62 points while wearing these signature shoes for the first time. This is against the New York Knicks at their home court Madison Square Garden.

This one’s for you if you are looking for the best performance, regardless of the budget. It is one of the market’s most expensive Kobe basketball shoes at $799.

Despite debuting almost a decade ago, its traction and durability still TOP the shoe game today.

You can also use its lightness and stylish look off the court. It will surely blend well with the fashionable fit you have in mind.

Pros

  • Great traction
  • The shoe’s design is stylish
  • Has additional ankle support
  • Very light

Cons

  • Lunaforam material loses bounce quickly

3. Kobe Mamba Fury – Best Budget

Features

  • Low-top
  • Phylon midsole
  • Zoom unit forefoot
  • Narrow

You are looking at one of the Nike Kobe shoes with the most consistent grip.

Despite being the entry-level line of Kobe’s sneakers, its materials are still proven to be performing. This is especially for those who want a tight fit.

It has a starting price of $263.80 up to $699.99 depending on its style, colorways, and sizes. Your budget will surely find its play in this shoe’s wide range of prices.

For the price you pay, its average performance is acceptable.

Another good thing about this Kobe signature shoe is that outdoor basketball players can use it. But I truly believe that you should consider other choices if you are quite a heavy player.

This is Kobe Bryant’s signature shoe which is why it is made for players with the same physique.  

Pros

  • Consistent grip
  • True to size
  • It can be used both indoors and outdoors
  • Provides enough ventilation

Cons

  • Not recommended for heavy players
  • Wide footers might experience fitting issues

4. Nike Kobe AD NXT – Best High-Cut

Features

  • High-cut
  • React form midsole
  • FastFit System
  • Weight: 14.02 oz

Kobe Bryant signature shoes transitioned from the “Kobe line” to the “AD line” after his retirement in 2016.

Despite its bigger build than most Kobe shoes, the Nike Kobe AD NXT is light. Perfect for guards who also want to pile rebounds on their stat sheet.

The only thing that may bother you is its high price. You can see it with its unique premium design.

If you have the budget, this shoe is worth buying. It is a high-cut giving extra support for your ankles with an outsole that doesn’t wear easily.

You can also save time cleaning since this Nike Kobe AD NXT is easy to clean.

Pros

  • Aggressive traction
  • Easy to clean from dust
  • Very light
  • True to size

Cons

  • Not recommended for outdoor use
  • Quite expensive

5. Nike Kobe 6 Protro “Grinch Green Christmas” – Best Fan’s Choice

Features

  • Low-top
  • Engineered Mesh upper
  • Balanced cushioning system
  • Colorways: White and Green

I just looked at that unique design and did not wonder why it is the most popular among Kobe’s signature sneakers.

It was not just released in December 2020 to look like a Christmas shoe. This shoe is an instant classic made to look fast and light.

The latest shoe design improvements focused on increasing court feel and lightness. Its Zoom Air cushion also makes the signature sneakers more bouncy and responsive.

When it comes to floor grip, it is also one of the top choices.

You have to make sure the playing surface is clean. The Zoom Kobe’s outsole is known to lose grip on dusty floors.

Pros

  • Top-notch traction
  • Great cushion bounce
  • Addition impact support to your feet
  • Great comfort
  • True to size
  • Unique design

Cons

  • Pickups dust easily
  • Not recommended for outdoor use

6. Nike Kobe 5 Protro

Features

  • Low-top
  • Narrow
  • Responsive cushioning system
  • Weight: 10.7 oz
  • Colorways: Purple, White, Metallic Gold, Metallic Silver, and Black

The Nike Kobe 5 is a revamped version of his retro sneakers. They were improved to adapt to the developments in today’s shoemaking technology.

Another known revamped version of this signature shoe is Bruce Lee-inspired. This shows how Kobe takes inspiration from the said master in martial arts.

The Nike Kobe 5 Protro is one of the best basketball sneakers Kobe and Nike released after the former’s retirement – July 1, 2020 release date.

Several features in its original version more than a decade ago remained. The only difference is its better fitting and lighter weight.

Due to its improved fit, users can move more freely, getting more feel for the playing surface. The same is true for its better traction, perfect for quick players like Kobe.

Pros

  • Amazing grip
  • Great ankle support
  • Very light
  • Sleek design
  • Bouncy cushion

Cons

  • Outsole easily pickups dust
  • Quite expensive

7. Nike Mamba Rage

Features

  • Low-top
  • Narrow
  • Flyweave upper
  • Lunar midsole
  • Engineered mesh inner sleeve
  • Weight: 11 oz
  • Colorways: Grey, Blue, Red, Black

This shoe looks simple, yet it performs well despite its low price.

The Nike Mamba Rage is another budget-friendly choice on this list. Starting at $100, you can already have extremely light indoor basketball shoes.

With its price range, you can experience average traction and impact support for your feet – the reason why it is perfect for small and quick players.

If you think its budget performance is not enough for your game, you can use it as your daily shoes.

It has several colorways with a design that fits well with any clothing style you want.

Pros

  • Very light
  • True to size
  • Affordable
  • Can blend well with casual clothes
  • Extra impact support for your feet

Cons

  • Not recommended for outdoor use

8. Nike Kobe 9 Elite

Features

  • High-cut
  • Lunarlon midsole
  • Flyknit material composition
  • Weight: 14.2 oz
  • Colorways: Green, White, Black, and 15 more

Using this shoe feels like you are not wearing any shoes at all.

The Nike Kobe 9 Elite is best known for its light yet great grip design. This shoe changed how we look at high cuts, which we mostly think of as heavy.

It also has a very responsive Lunarlon insert. This is an improvement from the previous model –  Kobe 8 sneakers.

Another thing you should not forget about this Nike sneaker is its non-slippery cushioning system. This is perfect for flashy players who are always active on the floor.

Lastly, its design and build surely fit any outfit you want to match it with.

Pros

  • Very light
  • Can blend well with casual clothes
  • Additional feet support
  • Durable
  • Unique design
  • Amazing grip
  • Good for quick and shifty players

Cons

  • Not recommended for users who do like tight fitting
  • Quite pricey

Why Should You Buy Kobe Sneakers?

Kobe Bryant is a Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. Nike even released a Nike Zoom Kobe 5 Protro “Hall of Fame” to commemorate this feat.

He also won six championships, among the most influential basketball players. Even NBA’s professional athletes wear his shoes – Devin Booker, Anthony Davis, and more.

But for me, the best explanation is because of four things: design, lightness, traction, and foot support.

Kobe’s sneakers from Adidas until he became one of Nike’s signature athletes have unique designs. Kobe showed in his sneakers his love for the game and his mentality.

Most, if not all, of his sneakers are also way lighter than other signature shoes. The black mamba and Nike made this possible without sacrificing great traction and foot support.

May it be the Adidas KB8, Nike Zoom Huarache, AD MID, Nike Zoom Kobe 5, or others, they are all complete packages.

What Should You Consider When Buying a Kobe Bryant Signature Sneaker?

From Adidas to Nike, you can surely find a Bryant sneaker that SUITS you. He even has a “Dark Knight” designed sneaker to show his liking for superheroes.

But due to the vast number of choices, you might have a hard time. Thus, you have to consider these points when choosing:

  • Price – most signature sneakers are not budget-friendly. But it doesn’t mean you cannot find a Bryant sneaker that suits your budget.
  • Fitting – Kobe has both narrow and wide-fitting sneakers. But most of them are on the former’s side.
  • Type – every player has a different comfort shoe type. First, it would be best to determine what type to narrow down your options.
  • Design – are you into stylish or minimalist designs? Luckily, Kobes cater to both of the categories.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

A single list is not enough to cover all the amazing Kobe Bryant sneakers. Thus, I have added more facts that you may still not know about the NBA superstar and his shoes.

What Is the Most Iconic Kobe Shoe?

Nothing is more iconic than using a new pair of shoes and dropping big numbers on the scoreboard.

In 2006, Kobe Bryant debuted the first Nike basketball sneaker under his name – Nike Zoom Kobe 1.

It was after he parted ways with Adidas due to several bad reviews on his sneakers, like the Adidas Kobe 2.

The Zoom Kobe 1 was first seen worn by the late NBA superstar against the Toronto Raptors. It will remain remarkable as he dropped 81 big points in that single game.

What Are Kobe Bryant’s Favorite Shoes?

Others might think Bryant’s favorite is the Nike Hyperdunk. This is because this introduced the Flywire design to the industry.

Bryant even rocked the international courts with the Nike Hyperdunk when he played for Team USA.

Unlike some NBA players with signature sneakers, Kobe wore every one of his shoes. 

Starting from his first shoe with Adidas until the Nike AD NXT 360 before he passed away.

What Are the Lightest Kobes?

One of Bryant’s goals in designing his signature sneakers is overall lightness. Every new model strived to provide lower weight while performing great in traction, design, support, and others.

However, the shoe in which Bryant exerted most of the lightness efforts is the Nike Kobe 8. Can you imagine a shoe that only weighs 9.6 oz?

Lightness is NOT the only thing this show offers. It also has a great fit and Lunar foam midsole for good support and smooth performance.

It can also compete with the traction of Nike Zoom Huarache, Kobe AD Mid, or other Kobe sneakers with a good floor grip.

The Awesome Choices

I feel you if you say you are still confused about what Kobe sneaker to purchase next. Lucky are those who have a bigger budget to buy all the choices on this list.

Thus, let me summarize the best picks into a recap of my top 3. I hope you can already finalize your decision.

Best Budget – Kobe Mamba Fury

Bryant made sure that even his budget shoes performed well. Kobe Mamba Fury is why you can experience a durable, stylish shoe with a consistent grip.

Unlike other signature shoes, it is true to size. So, you don’t have to go up or down half of your size to make sure it fits.

It would be best if you also remembered that it has a good ventilation system. Your feet will never feel hot, no matter how long you wear this shoe.

Best Value – Nike Zoom Kobe 4

This Bryant shoe is for those who have a bigger budget. When you finally have one, you can testify how it cares for your feet and overall basketball performance.

The Nike Zoom Kobe 4 provides the best traction you can experience. Aside from its lightness is its remarkable ankle support.

You will unlikely break your ankles with your opponent’s crossovers. It is also a sneaker that can turn heads on and off the court.

Indeed, the price matches its basketball or casual shoe purpose.

Best Overall – Nike Kobe 6

Think of anything you want from your sneaker, and this Kobe shoe will deliver.

Regarding traction, durability, materials used, and design, the Kobe 6 is at the top. Add to the list the known snakeskin exterior design. 

Wear a pair of these Bryant sneakers, and you will like playing in the NBA finals.

Conclusion

If you directly look at the internet, you will be overwhelmed in choosing the best Kobe shoes.

It surely performed well if Bryant wore it in a regular season game or the NBA finals. You will be satisfied regardless of what shoe you finally buy on the list above.

Thanks to Kobe’s wife, Vanessa Bryant, for continuing the last superstar’s legacy.

Undoubtedly, it will still be at the top for years. This is alongside MJ’s Air Jordans and the King’s sneakers.

Feature Image credit: ChLeBron99, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons