7 Best Low Top Basketball Shoes For Men, 100+ Shoes Tested in 2022

Dimitrije Curcic
Dimitrije Curcic on
7 Best Low Top Basketball Shoes For Men, 100+ Shoes Tested in 2022

Low-cut styles are great for players who value quickness, explosiveness, and agility of movement. While not as supportive as the high-cut and mid-cut counterparts, low top basketball shoes are perfect for floor generals and crafty shooting guards.

From Nike to Adidas, Jordan to Under Armour, you have plenty of choices to select from depending on your personal preferences, budget, and the latest technologies that you want to have on your shoes. Getting the right pair can be time-consuming to some. We are here to help you.

We’ve reviewed over 160 of the best low top basketball shoes for men. From budget-friendly options to the premium signature models of leading brands, we’ve highlighted our best picks in different categories to narrow down your choices.

How we test basketball shoes

To make the recommendations, we perform an array of mechanical tests and on-court tryouts to ensure we have solid data to anchor our top selections. That means bringing all the models to the RunRepeat shoe testing lab for in-depth analysis. We specifically get all the inputs from the following:

  • We personally purchase all the men’s low top basketball shoes from our own pocket.
  • We do a battery of tests in the lab, which involves slicing the models into their essential parts. We then examine and measure each parameter such as the outsole traction, midsole softness, cushioning, energy return, and many more.
  • Our wear-testers play some games of basketball on the hardwood, as well as the hardcourt in the park. At the end of each session, they report back to us with their feedback.
  • We collate more useful information from other expert reviews and regular users of the shoes.

For the verdict, we calculate all the variables using our proprietary CoreScore system. Based on the aggregated data above, each pair of low top shoes is given its overall score ranging from 0 to 100.

Best men's low top basketball shoes overall

Nike Cosmic Unity
Nike Cosmic Unity

CoreScore

91
Superb!
4.6 / 5 from 109 users
90 / 100 from 18 experts

Pros

  • Top-tier cushioning
  • Consistent traction both on clean and dusty surfaces
  • Supportive once broken in
  • Grippy outsole
  • Wide feet friendly
  • OK for outdoor use
  • Sustainable materials
  • Awesome looks
  • Soft, snug fit

Cons

  • Break-in period needed
  • Not so breathable

Verdict

If you are a player who loves a supportive, plush cushioning setup that still feels relatively low to the ground, this is a basketball shoe that fits that mold well. Plus, there's the benefit of being a more sustainable purchase choice!
Nike Cosmic Unity full review

Best Nike low top basketball shoes for men

Nike Air Zoom BB NXT
Nike Air Zoom BB NXT

CoreScore

89
Superb!
4.5 / 5 from 201 users
86 / 100 from 15 experts

Pros

  • True to size
  • Nice fit
  • Impressive cushioning
  • Great lockdown
  • Durable
  • Breathable
  • Out of the box comfort
  • Good traction

Cons

  • No ankle support

Verdict

Nike Air Zoom BB NXT is light with plenty of cushion. Looking at it, it has a lot of cushion, but when you pick it up and even wear it, the shoe is surprisingly light! When lacing it up, the shoe i very comfortable and responsive. The extensive sole makes it look tall despite it being a low-top shoe. BB NXT definitely has an advanced design to feel this good.
Nike Air Zoom BB NXT full review

Best Jordan low top basketball shoes for men

Air Jordan 11 IE Low
Air Jordan 11 IE Low

CoreScore

87
Great!
4.8 / 5 from 204 users
N/A

Pros

  • Comfortable fit
  • Fits true to size
  • Highly recommended
  • Excellent quality
  • Fire look
  • Looks better than the regular
  • Ventilation panels
  • Breathable

Cons

  • Poor silhouette
  • Stiff

Verdict

The Air Jordan 11 Retro Low IE has a polarizing silhouette that casual sneakerheads don’t find exciting. However, OG collectors are asserting that these Air Jordan basketball shoes are worth copping. For $170, you’ll get a pair of good quality sneakers that are comfortable to wear during the summer.
Air Jordan 11 IE Low full review

Best Adidas low top basketball shoes for men

Adidas Crazy Explosive Low
Adidas Crazy Explosive Low

Out of stock in all 55 shops

Adidas men's low top basketball shoes  

CoreScore

89
Superb!
4.5 / 5 from 57 users
89 / 100 from 13 experts

Pros

  • Amazing step-in comfort
  • Comfortable cushioning
  • Excellent traction
  • Lightweight and breathable
  • Cool design and colors
  • Great for casual wear
  • Soft upper
  • Requires no break-in
  • Provides good support

Cons

  • Not for outdoor play
  • Heel slippage
  • Causes toe jamming
  • Laces easily come undone
  • Weak traction on dusty courts

Verdict

Performance-wise, nothing has changed. What you’ll get is the Crazy Explosive Mid performance in low-top form: great step-in comfort, impact protection, traction, responsive Boost cushioning, and solid support. As with the mid-top model, the shoe’s durability could have been better. It’s an all-in-one low-top package that gets the job done.
Adidas Crazy Explosive Low full review

Best low top outdoor basketball shoes for men

Under Armour Spawn 3
Under Armour Spawn 3

CoreScore

87
Great!
4.5 / 5 from 177 users
90 / 100 from 2 experts

Pros

  • Great traction: Basketball athletes are so thrilled with the Spawn 3's traction. They say it's "freaking phenomenal"
  • Balanced midsole: Reports say that Under Armour's Micro-G tooling provides an amazing blend of comfort, impact protection, and court feel.
  • Nice fit: Ballers say that the shoe "did a really good job of hugging [their] foot."
  • OK for outdoors: A player suggests that the outsole of this Under Armour shoe is sturdy enough for outdoor use.
  • Lightness: At only around 11.2 oz (318 g), the Under Armour Spawn 3 is definitely among the lightest low-tops.

Cons

  • Cheap-feeling materials: Though this isn't such a big deal performance-wise, players still point out that the materials aren't the most premium.
  • Lateral instability: One player points out that his side-to-side movements felt a bit unstable because of the curve in the heel.

Verdict

The Under Armour Spawn 3 is a well-received shoe, and players don't have qualms recommending it to others. Yes, there are issues here and there, but they surely are not that significant to be dealbreakers.
Under Armour Spawn 3 full review

Best value low top basketball shoes for men

Nike Mamba Focus
Nike Mamba Focus

CoreScore

88
Great!
4.7 / 5 from 2,565 users
77 / 100 from 6 experts

Pros

  • Durable
  • Responsive midsole
  • Premium-looking materials
  • Satisfactory support and lockdown
  • Delivers a minimal feel
  • Great for casual wear

Cons

  • Insufficient traction
  • Stiff cushioning
  • Cheap materials

Verdict

While the Nike Mamba Focus' offers premium-looking materials and sleek style, its cushioning, fit, and traction fell short in delivering what wearers expected from it. That said, basketball fans agree that this footgear is not worth having, unlike the Nike PG3 and the Adidas Dame 5, which delivers better results and retailed near the Mamba Focus' price point.
Nike Mamba Focus full review
Author
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.