Verdict from 6 experts and 23 user reviews

10 reasons to buy

  • A lot of testers feel that the traction on the Crazy 97 holds them to the ground really well regardless of what maneuvers they do on-court.
  • Many users like the material of the outsole rubber, saying that the shoe is great for playing outdoor basketball because it feels durable. Users recommend this and the third Paul George Nike basketball shoe for outdoor play.
  • Because of the unique shape of the midsole, majority of the reviewers comment that the Adidas Crazy 97 feels very stable.
  • The shoe is based on the Feet You Wear technology where the midsole molds to the natural shape of the foot, and many testers find this set-up to be very comfortable.
  • Because the Crazy 97’s midsole is rounded, a lot of wearers say that it helps them change directions quickly.
  • Some of the players think that the shoe feels very lightweight in spite of it looking bulky.
  • One tester appreciates the construction of the heel area, saying that it will conform to a lot of ankle shapes.
  • Many of the reviewers comment that the lockdown from forefoot to midfoot is perfect, as long as you tighten your laces really well. Adidas is reported to deliver great lockdown especially with the 5th Damian Lillard basketball sneaker.
  • A lot of users also love the look of the shoe, saying that they are a pair of gorgeous sneakers.
  • Some reviewers comment that the shoe is actually very low-to-the-ground. It has the same low-profile as other Kobe Bryant basketball sneakers from Nike.

5 reasons not to buy

  • Majority of the users say that the shoe is not very well-ventilated.
  • One tester mentions that the shoe will need to be re-tightened after break-in since it uses a leather upper, and the material usually expands due to the heat and moisture build-up.
  • A few reviewers comment that they feel some heel slippage due to the elastic bands behind the ankle.
  • Some users do not feel much impact protection on the shoe since it has light cushioning.
  • There were a couple of commenters who do not like the look of these Three Stripes basketball shoe’s look.

Bottom line

Despite the shoe’s unusual shape and design, many users are delighted with the shoe’s performance on-court. It has high ratings in terms of traction, material, support, and fit; and this ultimately tells us not to judge a shoe by its upper.

Tip: see the best basketball shoes.

Good to know

Adidas Crazy 97’s unique silhouette draws inspiration from the Feet You Wear technology; integrating a functional yet distinctly-shaped midsole into a flashy design. This shoe used to be called the Adidas EQT Elevation and was first worn on court in a 1997 Slam Dunk Contest by Kobe Bryant who was fresh out of high school. Re-released in 2017, its performance still proves true on-court even 20 years after its debut.

Cushion. The Adidas Crazy 97 has a very light yet comfortable cushioning. The shoe’s design is inspired by the Feet You Wear technology; and although Adidas no longer has the license to use it, the Crazy 97 was still able to retain its midsole shape. Despite the bulky look of the shoe, it keeps one’s feet low to the ground to give an excellent court-feel. The grooves on the shoe make the foot flex naturally; and the rounded edges also bring about stability to the ankle, reducing foot injuries.

Traction. The shoe’s outsole is segmented into three rounded, protruding sections. Not including the midfoot arch support, the double herringbone pattern is molded all over the pods. The outsole uses a solid, durable rubber, so it is very safe to use in both outdoors or indoors, clean or dusty surfaces. For added traction, the forefoot pattern also extends to the sides of the midfoot.

Length and Width. The Crazy 97 fits true to size lengthwise. However, after breaking in, the shoe’s upper will expand quite a bit, and you will have to tighten the laces a little bit more. Thus, if you would like a tighter fit on the upper, it is recommended to go half a size lower.   

Lockdown. The shoe features a cage-like midsole that extends to the upper. When the laces are tightened, the midsole clamps the foot down, ensuring a solid lockdown.

Adidas Crazy 97 uses a mix of materials for its upper–high-quality synthetic leather in the main areas of the upper, and a combination of patent leather and nylon fabric on the lateral side and tongue. The shoe uses molded EVA foam in its midsole and a durable non-marking solid rubber on the outsole.

Striking colors and bold zigzag lines are the first things to get noticed on the Adidas Crazy 97. The shoe has come in different colorways since its release; however, the most famous colorway is the Lakers-inspired Purple and Black colorway which Kobe Bryant wore to the 1997 Dunk Contest in Philadelphia.

From the top, the laces are tucked into the tongue area, so as not to take away from the shoe’s flashy design. Holographic logos that interchange with the number 8–the jersey number that Kobe Bryant played in when he was playing for Lakers–and the Adidas Equipment logo can be found on the tongue and on the lateral side of the shoe. The signature three stripes can also be seen on the lateral side of the shoe, and a more subtle one is on the medial side. The Adidas Equipment logo can also be found on the pull tab of the tongue and on the tip of the forefoot.


How Adidas Crazy 97 ranks compared to all other shoes
Bottom 47% basketball shoes
All basketball shoes
Bottom 42% Adidas basketball shoes
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Bottom 16% kobe bryant basketball shoes
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The current trend of Adidas Crazy 97.
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Dimitrije Curcic
Dimitrije Curcic

Dimitrije Curcic has been playing basketball for over 22 years. Like Manu Ginobili, he’s a left-hander whose moves led him to a better career-shooting percentage than the Argentine himself. After playing professionally for 10 years, Dimitrije moved to coaching for two seasons before he became a basketball statistician for StatScore, and FanSided contributor for the San Antonio Spurs. Dimitrije loves to tell hoop stories through numbers and graphics and has been featured on Fansided, FiveThirtyEight, Eurohoops, and TalkBasket among the others.