From footwork to footwear, Kobe Bryant is dedicated to the details. A Nike signature athlete since 2006. Kobe was in a transition stage of his career and almost became the face of Brand Jordan preceding Michael Jordan into the modern era of basketball. The five time NBA champion wanted to align himself with the brand that had a legendary track record to match his level of excellence on the court.The Kobe 1 was his first shoe with Nike and also the first time with designer Eric Avar who has helped create other Nike classics like the Nike Flight Huarache alongside Tinker Hatfield, Nike Foamposite, and the list goes on.
Later down the line Kobe wanted to elevate his game even more and with evolving in his playing style on court he needed the hardware to compliment that.He wanted to go with a low cut shoe that would help with speed and his sudden cuts to the basket. Avar would make sure that Kobe had the proper responsiveness and incorporated ZOOM technology into several models of the Kobe signature line. The progression of the shoes would go from a 3/4 mid all the way to a below the ankle low top.
Bryant would go down with a season ending injury where he tore his Achilles tendon and when his next shoe would call for more ankle support the Kobe 9 was delivered as an extreme hightop alternative along with it’s ever so constant low top models as well. The Kobe 9 would be the first Nike basketball shoe to feature Flyknit material seen throughout the entire upper of the shoe which provide a very lightweight construction.
In 2015 Nike brings us the tenth signature shoe in the Kobe line. KOBE X takes a very simplistic approach where the shoe comes alive with hybrid cushioning, an advanced traction system and a seamless textile upper. These technical innovations, combined with an inspirational narrative based on transparency, separates the KOBE X from the competition. The seamless textile upper offers extreme breathability yet with lightweight strength that is not found on traditional mesh. Lunarlon material met with a new version of Nike’s FREE technology is encapsulated within a translucent sole that has little nodules to help with grip on the basketball court. The first colorway nicknamed the “5AM Flight takes inspiration from Bryant’s 40-foot, early morning leap from a diving platform in August 2013 as he recovered from surgery on his Achilles. The KOBE X releases on February 7, 2015 on Nikestore and in select nike retailers.