Last year, like other years, saw a lot of big sneaker hype drops. Perhaps none bigger than the Reverse Grinches that dropped in December. Along with the endless catalogue of Jordan retros, Kobes have now joined the list of must-have shoes for any sneakerhead who wants their collection to carry weight. Amongst the excitement, though, what's worth bearing in mind is that any Kobe that was released in recent years is a solid performance shoe.
For hoopers, then, there's a temptation to feel as though we've taken the biggest 'L's' when unsuccessfully bagging a big Kobe drop. When in reality, there are performance options out there, which exceed a Kobe 8 (for example) in terms of performance. If you just need a great shoe to hoop in, don't ignore some of the general releases that are still available, and a superb choice for the serious hooper.
Let's start with high-end in terms of price point. The LeBron 21s and the recently released G.T. Cut 3s are packed full of technology (most notably their elite cushioning), with the LeBrons coming in a range of colourways to suit the taste (or uniform) of most players. As mentioned, they're an investment in terms of price, but one that will pay off if you're on the basketball court regularly.
The buzz of the Aunt Pearl version of the KD16 was a little bit of a distraction from what is an excellently performing basketball shoe. This comes in at a lower price point than the LeBrons and G.T Cuts but has received equally excellent reviews. These are extremely comfortable to hoop in and again host a generous range of colourways.
Lastly, one of my favourite performance shoes of last year was the Sabrina 1s. There was a lot of positive conversation around these following many NBA players (as well as WNBA) opting for the Sabrina 1 as their shoe of choice. They are most frequently (and legitimately) compared to Kobes when discussing their performance, and for £120 (depending on your region), these can't be ignored.
Now that performance shoes are included in the hype drops, it's easy to feel cheated out of a good pair of shoes as a basketball player. Keep your options open in 2024, though - even if you take an L in a raffle, these options will help you get those Ws on the court!