T Nation

Looking for Basketball Shoes

I’m starting to play basketball again and need new sneakers. I’d love to find the high-top version of Nike Frees but I don’t think they exist. The problem is after getting used to Frees and Sanuks, most other shoes feel like “cement blocks.” So a light shoe that has good room in the toe area and a flexible sole with not much cushioning. I don’t care about brand or “coolness.”

I’ve tried on Nike Hyperdunks, Hyperize and Trainer SC 2010s. I’ve tried on 3 Adidas models. All 3 Adidas were too tight in the toe and stiff. Hyperdunks are hard to find high top but they weren’t bad lowtop. I would not wear lowtops to ball in though. Hyperize were light but uncomfortable.

So far the best ones were the Trainers, only 1 problem : they’re not really hightops, kind of in-between. Also, they’re new and $100 with no discounts anywhere I looked online.

So, any advice ? Any Nikes other than the ones mentioned? Reeboks? Converse/Pony/Starbury?
I live in NYC so no matter what you recommend I should be able to find a store that has them.

[quote]Sonny S wrote:
I’m starting to play basketball again and need new sneakers. I’d love to find the high-top version of Nike Frees but I don’t think they exist. The problem is after getting used to Frees and Sanuks, most other shoes feel like “cement blocks.” So a light shoe that has good room in the toe area and a flexible sole with not much cushioning. I don’t care about brand or “coolness.”

I’ve tried on Nike Hyperdunks, Hyperize and Trainer SC 2010s. I’ve tried on 3 Adidas models. All 3 Adidas were too tight in the toe and stiff. Hyperdunks are hard to find high top but they weren’t bad lowtop. I would not wear lowtops to ball in though. Hyperize were light but uncomfortable.

So far the best ones were the Trainers, only 1 problem : they’re not really hightops, kind of in-between. Also, they’re new and $100 with no discounts anywhere I looked online.

So, any advice ? Any Nikes other than the ones mentioned? Reeboks? Converse/Pony/Starbury?
I live in NYC so no matter what you recommend I should be able to find a store that has them.[/quote]

Yeah, no such thing as high-top Nike Frees. But keep in mind, the idea of high-top shoes preventing ankle sprains is mostly myth anyway. Another thing to keep in mind is that an NBA team actually banned those Hyperizes after seeing too many ankle sprains with them. And while Jordans are def a good look (I’m from the old-school so I do collect), most of them suck for performance IMO.

I’ve been using my Nike Free 7.0trainers on the hoop court for awhile now, and no ankle sprains period. I haven’t taped my ankles in ages either so I’m hoping it’s the improved foot alignment and foot strength (thanks to the Frees) at play here.

@ADvanced TS : what are they, Jordans? What model?

Jordan VI

[quote]chillain wrote:
Yeah, no such thing as high-top Nike Frees. But keep in mind, the idea of high-top shoes preventing ankle sprains is mostly myth anyway. Another thing to keep in mind is that an NBA team actually banned those Hyperizes after seeing too many ankle sprains with them. And while Jordans are def a good look (I’m from the old-school so I do collect), most of them suck for performance IMO.

I’ve been using my Nike Free 7.0trainers on the hoop court for awhile now, and no ankle sprains period. I haven’t taped my ankles in ages either so I’m hoping it’s the improved foot alignment and foot strength (thanks to the Frees) at play here.[/quote]

Good luck with that but for anyone who’s already sprained an ankle they are much better off with hightops or ankle braces. As well as pushing there feet through all ranges of motion frequently.

OP your best bet is to go to a store and try them on until you find what you like. Feet are very specific, but as with training don’t get hung up on anything in particular or you’ll never get them

[quote]chillain wrote:
Yeah, no such thing as high-top Nike Frees. But keep in mind, the idea of high-top shoes preventing ankle sprains is mostly myth anyway. Another thing to keep in mind is that an NBA team actually banned those Hyperizes after seeing too many ankle sprains with them. And while Jordans are def a good look (I’m from the old-school so I do collect), most of them suck for performance IMO.

I’ve been using my Nike Free 7.0trainers on the hoop court for awhile now, and no ankle sprains period. I haven’t taped my ankles in ages either so I’m hoping it’s the improved foot alignment and foot strength (thanks to the Frees) at play here.[/quote]

Good luck with that but for anyone who’s already sprained an ankle they are much better off with hightops or ankle braces. As well as pushing there feet through all ranges of motion frequently.

OP your best bet is to go to a store and try them on until you find what you like. Feet are very specific, but as with training don’t get hung up on anything in particular or you’ll never get them

Nike does make Nike Dunk Trainer FREE hybrids (from a few years back) that could constitute “FREE highs”

I’m a big shoehead so yes they are around but seriously to the OP some cushioning would help, especially for hoops.

See link - http://www.flightclubla.com/p.php?fc=la&c=xt&i=030563

Other than that seriously walk into any shoestore, there are so many balling kicks out there. No need to be blinded by the swoosh although their tech is ridiculous.

One of the best in my opinion was the Nike 2K4 Huarache, hands down a favorite with a lot of ballers. Ask around.

Good luck in your search.

I took Airtruth and jaybvee’s advice and tried on as many as possible and tried not to be blinded by the swoosh. I went to 4 diff’t stores and tried on: 3 new pairs of Adidas - they all hurt my foot- too stiff and narrow. I tried on tons of Nikes besides the ones I mentioned earlier: the new Huarache (comfy but not true high top), Air Max Turnaround, Air Max Rise, original Bo Jackson Trainers and a few others. 4 types of Reeboks. You get the point.
The best of those was the Max Rise with the original trainers a close 2nd. I didn’t really want to spend 90 and 105 bucks though, so I said “let me look online and see if I can find a better price.” I know the clerks were cussing me out for not buying anything.

As I was leaving the mall, on a hunch I went into Sears b/c I knew a) they don’t have shoe clerks so I can try on as many as I want w/out bothering anyone and 2) they tend to have lower price kicks.

I tried on a no-name brand and I was surprised at how comfortable they were. But they were 50 bucks, too much IMO. I didn’t see much else and I was about to leave when I saw an And1 box. I know And1 is a b-ball only company so I figured they would put out a good shoe. And they did: the winner, the And1 Rocket. COmfortable, super-light and very well-cushioned in the heel, good cushinoning in the front.
AND they were on sale for 39.99 . Nice.

BTW, the And1 rockets are on sale at sears.com for 29.99 with free shipping until 4/3. I was going to return them and pick up 2 online but I really like mine which are black nubuck, those aren’t on the website.

Hi tops do nothing for ankle sprains. I had a few bad ones in my playing days and always ended up taping my ankles at some point. Taping won’t even prevent an ankle sprain but will reduce severity if it does happen. In spite of my ankle sprains I always wore mid cut in my prime, for the comfort and reduced weight.

[quote]TheBodyGuard wrote:
Hi tops do nothing for ankle sprains. I had a few bad ones in my playing days and always ended up taping my ankles at some point. Taping won’t even prevent an ankle sprain but will reduce severity if it does happen. In spite of my ankle sprains I always wore mid cut in my prime, for the comfort and reduced weight. [/quote]

I think when everyone here says “hi-top” they really mean “mid-top”. I don’t think traditional high-tops have been around since the mid 90’s. I know the OP picked up a pair of AND 1’s and I hope they work out, but I will always stand by Nike as my hoopin’ shoe of choice. Every pair of Adidas I’ve ever worn felt heavy and stiff, and the only Reeboks I’ve ever liked were the Questions, Iverson’s first shoe. I have a pair of Reeboks now that look a lot like Nike Shox that were an eastbay exclusive, and while they look way sharp they don’t perform that well. The best pair of basketball shoes I’ve ever had were a pair of shox that came out in '05. Don’t remember the name but I’d recognize 'em if I saw 'em. And, if I did see 'em I’d pick up several pair. Damn near every serious ball player I’ve talked to that was around at the time swears by the Nike Flightposite as the best basketball shoe of all time. I never wore 'em 'cause I was 16 or 17 when they came out and they were 170 bucks. Mom wasn’t down like that, haha.

[quoteame but I’d recognize 'em if I saw 'em. And, if I did see 'em I’d pick up several pair. Damn near every serious ball player I’ve talked to that was around at the time swears by the Nike Flightposite as the best basketball shoe of all time. I never wore 'em 'cause I was 16 or 17 when they came out and they were 170 bucks. Mom wasn’t down like that, haha.[/quote]

The flightposites have been reissued, they still cost 170 :slight_smile:

And yes, I know the Rocket is a mid and not a high top. I haven’t had legit high-tops since some Air Flights in the 90s.

Lets talk no more of ankle sprains: bad juju.

[quote]Sonny S wrote:
[quoteame but I’d recognize 'em if I saw 'em. And, if I did see 'em I’d pick up several pair. Damn near every serious ball player I’ve talked to that was around at the time swears by the Nike Flightposite as the best basketball shoe of all time. I never wore 'em 'cause I was 16 or 17 when they came out and they were 170 bucks. Mom wasn’t down like that, haha.[/quote]

The flightposites have been reissued, they still cost 170 :slight_smile:

And yes, I know the Rocket is a mid and not a high top. I haven’t had legit high-tops since some Air Flights in the 90s.

Lets talk no more of ankle sprains: bad juju.[/quote]

I meant the Foamposite. I think they may have been reissued recently as well.

EDIT: My bad, I did mean the Flightposite.

My fave was the original Vince Carter. They were probably as much of a “hi-top” as anything in recent memory. It might have been a bit gimmicky, but I truly felt the monkey paw saved me from an ankle sprain or two and limited the damage when I did suffer one. I had a pair of foamposites, which I believe came after the flightposites and those had a pretty nice feel.

[quote]iwong wrote:
My fave was the original Vince Carter. They were probably as much of a “hi-top” as anything in recent memory. It might have been a bit gimmicky, but I truly felt the monkey paw saved me from an ankle sprain or two and limited the damage when I did suffer one. I had a pair of foamposites, which I believe came after the flightposites and those had a pretty nice feel.[/quote]

You mean the Vinces when he was with Puma or his first run with Nike?

I’ve got several pairs each of the Flightposites/Foamposites (shoehead here) & for court feel the the Flightposite series rocks. If you can fit the Flightposite 3 model, it’s like landing on pillows after a rebound. Great cushioning.

Here is a link to an archived site that is now defunct but when this dude was online doing his bball reviews he was legendary; if you Google “Kicksology.net” you will find a tresaure trove of info on various Nike bbball shoes that serious bball shoe heads archived & saved, and some others (And1, etc). Too bad he branched into clothing, took a loss & had to close his site down.

Some links:

http://web.archive.org/web/20020124053138/http://www.kicksology.net/

&

http://sirius.cs.put.poznan.pl/~inf67547/kicksology/toe-to-toe_flightposites.html

Also this quote from another site:

“Does anybody here remember kicksology.net? image The site existed during a time where DSL and cable internet were things unheard of. It was run by a guy who wrote under the name Professor K and was dedicated to reviewing hoops shoes. His articles on shoes were the most in depth you could ever find. They were quite lengthy but definitely worth the time as they were well written and unbiased. Everything from design and technology, to weight and even break in periods of the shoes would be elaborated upon. If you were fortunate enough to play in some of the shoes he reviewed, you would certainly find that the Professor knew what he was doing. Readers would probably agree with about 90% of the things he put down. image It was your all-around resource if you wanted to know more about a shoe before purchasing. That’s where you could find out if a sneaker lived up to its technological hype or if you could get something better to hoop in for half the price. Sadly, this site no longer exists.”

Enjoy the read! Jay

[quote]jaybvee wrote:
I’ve got several pairs each of the Flightposites/Foamposites (shoehead here) & for court feel the the Flightposite series rocks. If you can fit the Flightposite 3 model, it’s like landing on pillows after a rebound. Great cushioning.

Here is a link to an archived site that is now defunct but when this dude was online doing his bball reviews he was legendary; if you Google “Kicksology.net” you will find a tresaure trove of info on various Nike bbball shoes that serious bball shoe heads archived & saved, and some others (And1, etc). Too bad he branched into clothing, took a loss & had to close his site down.

Some links:

http://web.archive.org/web/20020124053138/http://www.kicksology.net/

&

http://sirius.cs.put.poznan.pl/~inf67547/kicksology/toe-to-toe_flightposites.html

Also this quote from another site:

“Does anybody here remember kicksology.net? image The site existed during a time where DSL and cable internet were things unheard of. It was run by a guy who wrote under the name Professor K and was dedicated to reviewing hoops shoes. His articles on shoes were the most in depth you could ever find. They were quite lengthy but definitely worth the time as they were well written and unbiased. Everything from design and technology, to weight and even break in periods of the shoes would be elaborated upon. If you were fortunate enough to play in some of the shoes he reviewed, you would certainly find that the Professor knew what he was doing. Readers would probably agree with about 90% of the things he put down. image It was your all-around resource if you wanted to know more about a shoe before purchasing. That’s where you could find out if a sneaker lived up to its technological hype or if you could get something better to hoop in for half the price. Sadly, this site no longer exists.”

Enjoy the read! Jay[/quote]

I forgot about kicksology! The problem with the flightposite’s were they were “fitted”. The 2 and 3’s are some of the sharpest looking shoes of all time, but if your foot wasn’t built for 'em you couldn’t wear 'em. I have a very narrow foot and they just didn’t fit well. I also had a pair of the Air max uptempo 96/97’s and they were the same way. The comfort and cushioning were off the charts [not to mention they looked dope as hell], but they were made for a wider foot. I actually cut the elastic bands that were “laced” over the tongue so I could tie 'em tighter.

Try these

[quote]WhiteFlash wrote:

[quote]iwong wrote:
My fave was the original Vince Carter. They were probably as much of a “hi-top” as anything in recent memory. It might have been a bit gimmicky, but I truly felt the monkey paw saved me from an ankle sprain or two and limited the damage when I did suffer one. I had a pair of foamposites, which I believe came after the flightposites and those had a pretty nice feel.[/quote]

You mean the Vinces when he was with Puma or his first run with Nike?[/quote]

Nike