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Volume 27 No. 8
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Decade-Old Nike Kobe 4s Remain Popular Shoe Option In NBA

Any stigma around low top shoes in the NBA has disappeared since the Kobe 4s were released in '09
Photo: NBAE/GETTY IMAGES
Any stigma around low top shoes in the NBA has disappeared since the Kobe 4s were released in '09
Photo: NBAE/GETTY IMAGES
Any stigma around low top shoes in the NBA has disappeared since the Kobe 4s were released in '09
Photo: NBAE/GETTY IMAGES

More than 100 NBAers at every position are "lacing up a retro edition" of the Nike Kobe 4, originally released in '09, making it "one of the most popular individual sneakers in the NBA," according to Nick DePaula of ESPN.com. Nearly 67% of NBAers "wear Nike sneakers, and more of them are wearing Kobe-badged kicks than even the current lines for stars" like LeBron James, Kyrie Irving and Giannis Antetokounmpo. As Kobe Bryant got ready for his retirement in '16, he "mapped out a five-year plan to continue his Nike sneaker line." In the decade since the Kobe 4s were first released, a "stigma around low tops on the hardwood has all but disappeared," and more than "half the league now laces up lows." Ten of the 16 current "signature basketball shoes on the market are also low tops." The Kobe 4 could even "play a role in where potential MVP candidate" and sneaker free-agent Mavericks G Luka Doncic "lands his next sneaker deal." Doncic has "worn Under Armour and Jordan Brand in two games each this season, but keeps going back to his trusted Kobes" (ESPN.com, 12/6).