Facts

  • Top

    High-Top

    Basketball sneakers that rise well above the ankle to keep sprints and jumps stable and well-supported. You sure can fly high when you have high-top basketball shoes to tie.

    Mid-Top

    Basketball sneakers that rise just up to where the ankles are. Providing support and flexibility so fine, mid-top basketball shoes surely hold the line.

    Low-Top

    Basketball shoes that leave the ankles exposed for a better range of motion. Be flexible with your blows, get basketball shoes that are low.

  • Signature

    Good to know

    Some basketball shoes embody the athleticism and symbolize the life of certain on-court legends. Hooping will surely be fine when you get kicks from their signature lines.

  • Lockdown
    Lace-Up

    Strap

    Hoop shoes that drop the traditional laces in favor of velcro straps for better efficiency. Secure strap basketball shoes, and have them in various hues.

    Lace-Up

    Basketball shoes that stick with the good old laces for that familiar security and lockdown. Get lace-up basketball shoes to tie because they never go out of style.

    Slip-On

    Basketball shoes with uppers that provide a glove-like fit without the help of any lockdown mechanism. Do nothing but go in with slip-on basketball shoes .

    Good to know

    Some basketball shoes combine the powers of more than one lockdown styles for an improved fit and a much more stable ride. Get more bases covered with these basketball shoes.

  • Price
    $160
  • Weight
    12.1oz

    Good to know

    Basketball shoes usually weigh between 300g and 400g for speed and agility. Write your on-court tale with basketball shoes that barely tip the scales.

  • Special editions
Show more facts

Summary

We spent 5.8 hours reading reviews from experts and users. In summary, this is what basketball players think:

8 reasons to buy

  • According to users, the Kobe A.D. with the solid rubber outsole has a good grip on both clean and dusty surfaces.
  • The majority of reviewers love that these Kobe shoes comes in vibrant colors and a very clean look that can be worn on and off the court.
  • Due to the stiff materials used, many users agree that the shoe’s upper is very durable.
  • Because the upper does not stretch, most of the testers commend its ability to lock the foot down; saying that the materials wrap around one’s foot very well and the Nike Flywire is just a “security blanket.”
  • According to many, the heel area is contoured so well it provides good ankle support and great heel containment.
  • Many of the reviewers deem the Nike Kobe AD’s midfoot to heel areas to be very comfortable because they are heavily padded.
  • Many reviewers appreciate the pull tab on the heel collar, commenting that it makes putting the shoe on easier.
  • One tester mentions that he is not worried about hurting his ankles while using these Kobe Bryant basketball shoes because they’re quite stable.

11 reasons not to buy

  • The majority of reviewers say that the traction on the transparent outsole is inconsistent. They advise buyers to purchase the model with the solid rubber outsole instead.
  • Some of the users say that the material used in the outsole is not durable. After a few hours of hard play, they could feel the outsole separating from the midsole.
  • Two users mention that due to the outrigger’s size and material composition, it rolls under the outsole during hard cuts or crossovers. One of them alludes to how his outrigger got torn off after 10 hours of use.
  • A lot of the players comment that the shoe’s upper is too stiff. During and even after breaking in, some users experience discomfort, pain, and stabbing in the forefoot area.
  • Majority of the testers agree that the materials on the shoe have a longer-than-usual break-in time.
  • Many users state that the shoe runs narrow and will fit tightly on the forefoot, especially on wide-footers.
  • Some of the testers are angered that Nike engraved a Zoom unit-esque form on the lateral side, suggesting that the unit on the Kobe AD is larger than it really is.
  • Most players think that the shoe’s Lunarlon cushioning is very stiff and doesn’t provide much impact protection.
  • Some say that they can’t feel the Zoom unit on the heel.
  • One user explains that Zoom and Lunarlon are caged in the midsole and has zero room for expansion, resulting in a less responsive and very firm cushion.
  • A few testers mention that the “breathable” mesh that was used for the shoe’s upper is not as well-ventilated as advertised

Bottom line

Many testers have high expectations for this shoe. No one can blame them since Kobe shoes are considered to be among the top performing basketball shoes in the industry. Kobe Bryant himself is also known for his high demands for excellence.

Although the shoe gets the job done on the court, many reviewers don’t think that it deserves to be associated with Kobe, nor do they feel that it warrants a $160 price tag. However, aesthetics-wise, everyone agrees that these Kobe basketball shoes look really great.

Rankings

Expert Reviews

Experts are basketball players, who post reviews at youtube, directly at RunRepeat or at their own websites. Each expert is categorized from level 1 to level 5 based on expertise. See stats on expert reviews and how we calculate scores here.

Are you an expert? Apply to contribute here.

68 / 100 based on 19 expert reviews

  • 90 / 100 | The Sole Brothers

    Overall, a very good guard shoe.

  • 90 / 100 | Hoop And Life

    I have got to say that the Kobe AD, in my opinion, is the best out of all of them.

  • 80 / 100 | RicheeKim

    If you need Kobes, go ahead and get them. I just wouldn't recommend it.

  • 70 / 100 | Schwollo

    If you thought the cushioning of the X was too stiff, you’ll hate these.

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Profile of Nike Kobe A.D.

The Nike Kobe A.D. represents Kobe Bryant’s living out of the Mamba Mentality after NBA. Bryant describes this as a way of life where he continually tries to better himself. Similarly, the Kobe AD’s silhouette is very similar to some of Kobe’s previous models; however, incremental improvements are added to make the shoe stand out.

Performance

Cushion. The shoe uses a full-length Lunarlon cushion. Lunarlon involves caging a Lunar Foam in a Phylon case. The Lunarlon cushion helps distribute the pressure during impact and decreases the joint pains experienced by players after gameplay. The Kobe A.D. also has a Zoom Air unit on the heel for added responsiveness. Lastly, the midsole also features flex grooves that are similar to the Nike Free. They add flexibility to the forefoot.

Traction. The Nike Kobe A.D. uses micro-tread traction on the forefoot, and it splays and grips the court when the foot is flexed. The forefoot pattern is reminiscent of the traction pattern on the Kobe X while the heel features a snake scale-like pattern that is similar to the Kobe VI.

Fit

Length and Width. The Kobe AD runs narrow. If you have wide feet, it is recommended to go half a size bigger. But if you have an average foot, you may follow your standard Nike basketball shoe sizing.

Lockdown. Proper lockdown for the Nike Kobe AD is ensured by the upper material's strength and density, as it doesn’t stretch too much on hard cuts. Because of its tight fit, it ensures that the foot does not slip within the shoe. Although the shoe has a low-top cut, it does not compromise on stability and support since the shoe also has stability-boosting features like Nike’s Dynamic Flywire technology and contoured heel-counter.

Material

From forefoot to midfoot, Nike Kobe A.D.’s upper uses a stiff and breathable textile mesh. A suede overlay is used on the heel, is heavily padded with foam. The heel counter is made of a reflective TPU.

For the midsole, a full-length Lunarlon cushion is used, while the heel features an encased regular-sized Zoom Air unit. Depending on the colorway, the shoe may have an outsole that is made of solid or transparent rubber.

Style

Although the shoe comes in vibrant colorways, the general look of the Kobe AD is very clean and minimalist. Sharp lines are stitched on the forefoot upper, while a suede material is used on the heel to make the shoe just as suitable for off-the-court use. To contrast with the shoe’s clean colors, a holographic TPU cup is installed on the heel. The shoe’s low-top cut allows for a wider range of motion for the player.

The shoe features a unique pull tab on the heel. The interior is embossed with a snake-shaped rubber grip that helps the wearer put on the shoe easily. A DNA strand is stitched on the left shoe’s exterior pull tab. Kobe Bryant’s signature is stitched on the right.

The Nike Swoosh can be found on both sides of the shoe and the Kobe Bryant logo can also be seen on the tongue, forefoot, insole, and outsole of the shoe.

Story

The shoe is technically the 12th shoe in Kobe Bryant’s signature line with Nike. However, Bryant explained that the name Kobe A.D. signified his retirement from basketball and his quest to start anew. For him, it didn’t seem logical to continue with the Kobe basketball shoe line when he is not anymore playing in the NBA.

Although secondary to how the shoe performed, Bryant expressed that the shoe’s physical look was also important to him. In an interview, he mentioned that the aesthetics of the shoe should measure up to the technology within it. He said that the sharp lines on the shoe mimic the movement of a sports car. Ultimately, he just wanted the Nike Kobe AD to look clean and embody the efficiency of its technological makeup.

Special Colorways of the Nike Kobe A.D.

Kobe Bryant’s 12th signature shoe with Nike comes in the following colorways:

  • Black/Black-Gum Light Brown ‘Black Mamba’
  • Black/White
  • Cool Grey/White ‘Ruthless Precision’
  • Igloo/Black
  • Light Bone White/Pale Grey-Gum ‘Summer Pack’
  • Midnight Navy/Pure Platinum ‘Midnight Navy’
  • Purple Stardust/Black
  • University Red/Total Crimson-White ‘University Red’
  • White/White-Black ‘Chrome’

Nike Kobe A.D. ‘BHM’

Nike celebrates Black History Month and the 2017 All-Star festivities with the release of the Kobe A.D. ‘BHM.’ The ‘BHM’ colorway is covered in a combination a white, black, and gold. A distinct graphic pattern completes the silhouette.

Nike Kobe A.D. ‘Big Stage’

This colorway takes after the Nike Kobe 5 ‘Big Stage’ that Bryant debuted in a game against the Boston Celtics during the 2010 NBA Finals. The Nike Kobe A.D. ‘Big Stage’ features a white-based upper with metallic gold accents.

Nike Kobe A.D. ‘DeRozan PE’ a.k.a. ‘City of Compton’

This PE colorway of the Nike Kobe A.D. is inspired by DeMar DeRozan’s memory of watching Bryant’s infamous “airball game” against the Utah Jazz in the 1997 Playoffs. This career-defining game taught Bryant how to overcome adversity, and that resilience was the key to become successful on the hardwood.

The Nike Kobe A.D. ‘City of Compton’ features the date May 12, 1997 on the lace tips as a nod to the “airball game.” A special “City of Compton” graphic is found on the insoles to honor DeRozan’s roots in Compton, California.

Nike Kobe A.D. ‘Flip the Switch’

The postseason is the time players “flip the switch” to unleash the energy they need for their playoff runs. The ‘Flip the Switch’ colorway of the Nike Kobe A.D. is dressed in a black-based upper with university red and hyper violet accents. The shoe’s notable feature is the cracked side Swoosh and gradient-like heel counter.

Nike Kobe A.D. ‘Oregon Ducks’

These Kobe Bryant basketball shoes take inspiration from Phil Knight, Tinker Hatfield, and several other Nike employee's Alma Mater. The ‘Oregon Ducks’ colorway features a black-based upper with yellow accents. Other Oregon Ducks-inspired details include the “O” logo on the heel and a duck wing graphic that wraps the entire midsole.

Nike Kobe A.D. ‘Time to Shine’

Nike basketball provided all the remaining Nike-sponsored schools in the 2017 NCAA Tournament with a special Time to Shine collection for their upcoming matches.

Like the other models included in the collection, the Nike Kobe A.D. ‘Time to Shine’ features a distinct iridescent Swoosh and gum outsole.