Sports and Outdoor

Top 10 Best Outdoor Basketball Shoes 2018

When you start playing basketball outside, you need shoes which can withstand the test of..umm..terrain? The outdoor shoes differ from the indoor basketball shoes in terms of grip, support, material and cushioning. They are specifically designed for more rough use. They should cope well with rougher and harder terrain.

Thus, saving you the time of going to the store and checking out all the shoes, We have compiled here the best outdoor basketball shoes which you can buy to improve your ball game greatly!

If you are in a hurry you can check out these 3 basketball sneakers pairs instead of going through the whole article:

  1. NIKE Lebron XV (Best Performance Basketball Shoes)
  2. Nike Youth KD8 (Best Low-cut Basketball Shoes)
  3. Under Armour Men’s Drive 4 (Best Cheap Basketball Shoes)

Best Outdoor Basket Shoes Buyer’s Guide:

Reeboks and Adidas are said to be the pioneers of the sports shoe development. In the start, the basketball players use the Chuck Taylor models, but in the late 20th century with the arrival of Nike’s Air Jordan, players started to use it

As basketball gained more attention many of the companies started making basketball shoes. This makes it very hard for the beginners to choose from a wide variety of shoes, “the best one”.

For this purpose, we have compiled a list of the characteristics which you should consider in the basketball shoes.

So let’s get started.

Durability
Materials
Shoe Dimensions
Cushioning
Traction Pattern
Pricing
Your Playing Style

 

Below is the table of Top 10 Best Outdoor Basketball Shoes 2018:

PRODUCT NAME CUSHIONING MATERIAL TRACTION PRICE
NIKE Lebron XV Battleknit (FlyKnit material) Multi-Surface Triangular Traction View Price
Adidas’ Men’s Crazy Explosive Textile/Synthetic Excellent Maze-like Traction View Price
Under Armour Men’s Drive 4 Textile/Synthetic Herringbone Traction View Price
Nike Lebron XIII Mesh/TPU/Hyperposite materials Hex-pods (Acts like Herringbone) View Price
Nike Air Jordan 7 Retro Leather Excellent Traction View Price
Nike Men's Lebron Soldier XI Synthetic (ballistic nylon) Good Traction View Price
ANTA Men’s KT2 Fuse and Mesh Herringbone Traction View Price
Nike Youth KD8 Flyweave with synthetic and mesh material Modified Multidirectional Herringbone Traction View Price
Nike Air Jordan 1 Mid Retro High OG Leather and Textile Excellent Traction View Price
Nike Jordan Fly Unlimited Textile Amazing Traction View Price

1-NIKE Lebron XV:

Features:

Nike has never disappointed its customers when it comes to basketball shoe-making. With the use of Flyknit technology and a great combination of cushioning, this is the best pair of shoes for playing basketball outdoors. The Flyknit technology uses high-strength fibers that makes the shoe light-weight and provides stretching and breathability.

For the first time, Nike has used both its Zoom Air and Max Air technology in a basketball shoe. It helps in landing safely from higher jumps. Lebron XV has a flexible rubber outsole, which gives you an awesome thrust and can save you from pronation.

Talking about the interior, It has a full inner-sleeve which offers a sock-like fit. Around the ankle part is a stretchable collar, which provides support for the ankle and also helps to get the shoe on and off easily.

For support and minimizing the weight of the shoes, Nike uses Flywire cables. These extend from mid-foot position to where the laces are tied.

Let’s discuss the style…Because why not?

Overall the look of this pair is amazing as you can see in the picture.

Lebron XV comes in following colors: Blue, Wolf Grey, Black with Metallic Gold, Red, and Black n White.

Pros and Cons of NIKE Lebron XV:

Pros
  • Ultralight
  • Great arch support
  • Great Stretchability and Support
  • Rubber Outsole provides Durability
  • Awesome Style
  • Multi Surface Traction
Cons
  • A bit expensive than others

 


2-Nike Lebron XIII:

Features:

Another from the Nike Lebron list, we have here is Lebron XIII (13). The advertising tagline of the shoe goes “UNSTOPPABLE EXPLOSION”, well, to be honest, it certainly meets the expectations.

Talking about the upper part of the shoe, it has a system of mesh all around it which allows the airflow thus keeping the feet dry. The shaft is measured to be approximately 4 inches from the arch. Just like in Lebron 15, Lebron 13 also possess Flywire cables which extend from midfoot covering the heels and provide a complete lockdown. This supports your feet and keeps them in place. Conclusively, the one-piece sleeve that is made of breathable mesh offers phenomenal flexibility, comfort, and support.

The outsole is made of rubber. It has four independent Zoom Air Units delivering extremely responsive cushioning, and overall support and comfort. The toe, midfoot and collar are made of “Hyperposite material” which provides zoned and armor-like protection for the foot.

Conclusively, if you are looking for best bang for buck basketball shoes for outdoor usage, I would certainly recommend Lebron XIII. It provides the comfort, support, flexibility, stability awesome air-flow, with its style being the icing on the cake, makes them stand out in the market.

Pros and Cons of Nike Lebron 13:

Pros
  • Extra Durable
  • Flexible
  • Outstanding Traction
  • Light-weight
  • Zoom Air units provides excellent cushioning
  • Rubber Sole
Cons
  • Nothing in particular

 

3- Nike Air Jordan 7 Retro (Marvin The Martian):

Features:

We have here another pair of shoes from Nike, Air Jordan 7 Retro 30th ( Marvin The Martian Edition). They are somewhat high top cut shoes providing great comfort and durability.

When you are playing basketball outside you really need a pair of shoes that do not wear out and can withstand the test of time. Nike Air Jordan 7 here are made of premium-quality leather that makes them durable. The shoe is black in color, with some beautiful neon and orangish finish.

Due to its traction pattern, it offers a strong grip on the floor which enhances the speed and overall foot movement. As the shoe is made up of leather, you can play for many hours without ever worrying about the shoe being worn out!

The outsole is red, orangish with neon, and is made of rubber. The midsole provides great cushioning which increases the bounciness and overall comfort of the shoes. The shoe is breathable, flexible and durable and allows for great air-flow to keep your feet dry.

Although, for many of you the style may not be up to the mark still it is a great pair for rough use outside playing basketball.

Air Jordan 7 Retro comes in many editions which you can see here.


Pros and Cons of Nike Air Jordan 7 Retro (Marvin The Martian):

Pros
  • Durable
  • Rubber Outsole
  • Traction pattern is good
Cons
  • Style is not up to the mark
  • A bit heavier than other shoes

 

4- Adidas Performance Men’s Crazy Explosive:

Features:

Adidas’ Men’s Crazy Explosive is yet another popular basketball shoes.

Adidas’ Men’s Crazy Explosive is made of textile and synthetic material with PrimeKnit Technology. It is a high-top cut shoe providing support for the ankle joints. The PrimeKnit method knits the yarn in one piece, thus paving way for flexibility and support needed in every part of the shoe. This provides optimal stability for quick movements while keeping the shoe ultralight.

The midsole is made up of “Boost” technology which uses thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) instead of standard Ethylene-vinyl acetate (EVA) material (Read more here). The boost provides a responsive and comfortable cushioning.

The outsole is made up of Rubber and it has a quite unique traction pattern.  Another feature that Adidas markets about this shoe is “Anatomical Lace System” that wraps the entire foot and helps to relieve pressure. It has sock-like bootie construction that feels like you’re wearing socks.

It comes in following colors: Core Black and Dark Navy.

Pros and Cons of Adidas Performance Men’s Crazy Explosive:

Pros
  • Boost provides phenomenal cushioning
  • The traction is very good
  • Great Support
  • Ultralight
Cons
  • Some users have complained about the quality of the sole

 

5- Nike Men’s Lebron Soldier XI Basketball Shoe:

Features:

Nike Lebron Soldier XI is a high-top cut shoe, made of synthetic material. It has four elastic straps to keep your foot in place providing a secure fit. Stronger straps support your forefoot and midfoot while the lighter ones stretch around your ankle for maximum comfort. The upper is made up of mesh that lets the air in and keeps the feet cool and comfortable. The mesh is backed with foam which makes it quite comfortable. The foam around the ankle helps limit pronation. The synthetic fiber and mesh are super flexible and supportive.

Just like Lebron 13, Soldier XI also has Nike Zoom Air units beneath the heel and ball of your foot which offers exceptional cushioning required for safe landings and drives.

The outsole of the shoe is composed of Rubber. It has a unique hexagonal-like traction pattern which provides a strong grip on the ground if you are planning to play outside.

Well, Personally I found out Soldier XI to be superior to Adidas Men’s Crazy Explosive in terms of comfort and support.

It comes in Grey, Red and Navy Blue colors.

Pros and Cons of Nike Lebron Soldier XI Basketball shoes:

Pros
  • Heel Straps provide support
  • Rubber sole
  • Full inner sleeve
  • Cushioning
  • Responsiveness
Cons
  • Some people may not like the concept of straps
  • Inconsistent Tractions
  • A little bulkier

 


6- ANTA Men’s KT2 Basketball Shoes:

Features:

ANTA KT2s were introduced in 2017. While KT3 is not out, The reason we are still writing KT2’s review in 2018 is simply that of its outstanding quality and sturdiness. It provides the best value for the money.

ANTA KT2 was designed for Klay Thompson’s 2017 post-season run. The materials used are fuse, mono-mesh, suede and tri-layer air-mesh for maximum control and breathability. It has a wing-like design on the heels which maximizes the support and comfort. The forefoot and heel also possess Zoom Air units which increase the responsiveness of the shoes.

The outsole is made of rubber and has a herringbone-like traction pattern which greatly enhances the grip even on quick movements. Whether you are playing inside or outside, KT2 never fails to work. The midsole is composed of EVA and it has foam pads in the forefoot. This makes the cushioning really soft and good responsiveness and protection. We saw nothing special for as far as support is concerned, although large outriggers get the job done.

The shoe is said to be a little bit narrow and it is recommended to buy with ½ size more.

Pros and Cons of ANTA KT2 :

Pros
  • Herringbone traction
  • Comfortable
  • Snugs at the toes and heels for ankle support
Cons
  • Support is not up to the mark
  • Slightly narrow

 


7- Nike Youth KD8:

Features:

Nike Youth KD8 is yet another great pair of low cut shoes for playing basketball. It provides all that is needed at a reasonable price.

It has an ultra-lightweight construction and is packed with some great features.

The upper is made of synthetic and mesh material with single layer Flyweave that provides the shoe with flexibility and strength. It also contains Flywire cables integrated with the laces for maximum support and lock-down effect. Foam heel provides stability needed for speedy movements.

The outsole is made of Rubber and has a multidirectional traction pattern for added grip; enhancing the players agility and strength. KD8 also boasts a full-length ZOOM Air unit which provides with low-profile cushioning needed enhancing the bounciness and flexibility overall.

 

Kevin Durant himself states that:

“WHEN I FIRST TESTED THE KD8, I INSTANTLY LOVED THE SPRINGY RESPONSE OF THE ZOOM AIR COMBINED WITH THE NATURAL FEEL OF THE FLYWEAVE. I DIDN’T WANT TO TAKE IT OFF.”Kevin Durant

 

Nike Youth KD8 comes in White/Metallic Silver-Black-Multi-Color

Pros and Cons of Nike Youth KD8:

Pros
  • Flyweave upper
  • Lock-down support
  • Great multidirectional traction pattern
  • Stylish
  • Great value for money
Cons
  • Size not true

 


8- Nike Air Jordan 1 Mid Retro High OG “Ying Yang Pack”:

Features:

Nike Air Jordan 1 Retro OG draws their heritage style from the original 1985 Air Jordan 1. It has a lace-up closure featuring the leather and an air-sole unit for comfort, durability which gives this pair a classic look. With its top-notch build quality, Air Jordan 1s are the ones to look for (no pun intended).

The upper is genuinely made of premium quality synthetic leather and textile. The shoe has an air-sole unit in heel for supportive cushioning. The shoe is carefully knitted around the heel counter to provide extra support and cushioning.

The outsole is made of solid rubber with deep flex grooves which provides it with an amazing traction pattern and strong grip on the floor.

Pros and Cons of Nike Air Jordan 1:

Pros
  • Top notch build quality
  • Fit is good
  • Really Comfortable
  • Good Traction
Cons
  • Nothin in particular

 


9- Nike Jordan Fly Unlimited:

Features:

Nike Jordan Fly Unlimited is yet another striking looking basketball shoe. In terms of Style, In my opinion, it is one of the best outdoor basketball shoes. The comfort, support, cushioning it provides is amazing. Let’s talk about them briefly.

The shoe upper has a lightweight textile construction and it provides amazing breathability. Above the laces, it has a wraparound strap which offers a locked-in feeling. Textile upper offers a full-bootie construction providing a comfortable containment playing basketball indoor or outdoor. The Inner sleeve delivers a sock-like comfort. AJ Fly Unlimited also has a proper support in the heel-counter area which helps in quick movements.

Talking about the outsole, it is made of rubber and the traction pattern is excellent, providing both durability and grip! Plush Foam and Nike Zoom Air unit in the forefoot provides responsive cushioning and comfort.

Pros and Cons of Nike Air Jordan Fly Unlimited:

Pros
  • Good Fit
  • Comfortable feeling
  • Stylish
Cons
  • Build quality not up to the mark

 

10- Under Armour Men’s Drive 4:

Features:

If you are a casual basketball player who does not want to spend a fortune on a shoe but still wants to up his game a bit, then UA Men’s Drive 4 should be the one you are looking for.

The upper of the shoe is made of textile and synthetic materials. The textile is both breathable and lightweight, thus keeping you agile and your feet dry. It has a full-length bootie construction with molded ankle collar for greater support and a snug which makes this pair a comfortable fit.

The outsole is made of Rubber. There is a toe wrap which enhances the forefoot flexibility. A system of durable reinforced lace loops provides a locked-in feeling. Furthermore, the outsole has a thick herringbone pattern which works on every surface and especially outdoors. Undoubtedly, the strongest point of UA Drive 4 is its excellent traction pattern.

Conclusively, some users have reported that the build-quality of the shoe is not good, having sub-standard materials, but in my opinion for this price range, it provides what is expected. It depends on your need as to what you want. If you are just starting, Then you should certainly take a look at these shoes before checking out the better and pricier ones.

Pros and cons of Under Armour 4:

Pros
  • Low price
  • Excellent traction
  • Best for outdoor usage
  • Great support
Cons
  • Proper padding is absent
  • Cushioning is not up to the mark

 

 

Conclusion:

Conclusively, I would like to add that before buying a pair of outdoor basketball shoes, you should always check whether it is providing proper support, cushioning, how does the traction look and behave? On which terrain you are going to use? Which type of sneakers do you like, high-top or low-top? We have gone through all this stuff and wrote this article for you so that you can make an informed decision before buying a particular pair.

We considered many different things in a shoe, like the traction pattern, support, fit and cushioning being the most fundamental ones. Then came the style and other features. We found out that indoor and outdoor basketball shoes are not the same. The outdoor shoes are made especially for their use of rough terrains.  

All the BB shoes mentioned above has its pros and cons. We had to think twice before choosing the winners.

With that being said, We have 3 winners from our list:

First one is, Nike Lebron XV:

Nike Lebron XV takes the lead with its amazing triangular traction pattern providing the best bite and grip on the floor. The next thing which makes it superior to the other basketball shoes is the Cushioning. The bounciness and comfort that you get from the Zoom units is incredible and increases the overall mobility and agility of the player. The material used is of premium quality unlike those of were LeBron 13 or LeBron 10,  The Flyknit feels awesome on-foot. It uses high-quality light-weight fibers that add stretching and breathability.

The next on the list is, Adidas’ Men’s Crazy Explosive:

Adidas’ Men’s Crazy Explosive has been created to meet all everyone’s expectations. It provides great traction, allowing you to change directions in a jiffy. What makes this shoe different from the others is the BOOST cushioning, which gives utmost comfort and impact protection so that when you are going to dunk the ball, you can have a comfortable landing too, saving you from pronation.

The third and the last one is Under Armour Men’s Drive 4:

We have made this addition keeping in mind Which is the cheaper basketball shoe and perform on par with the other more expensive ones. We found out that UA Men’s Drive 4 is the best in this regard. It is a high-top basketball shoe and the technology used is MicroG. It fits true to the size. The downside of the shoe is that it does not feature ClutchFit upper, which performed really good in the previous models. The textile mesh and neoprene upper may look cheaper in appearance but in reality, it feels really great. The MicroG provides the perfect cushioning for bigger and bulkier players. Though it certainly can not compete with BOOST or ZOOM Air, but still, it provides good value for the money spent. The best thing about the UA Armour 4 is its herringbone traction. It performs BEASTLY! Overall, these are the best cheap basketball shoes, providing great value for the money spent.

That’s all from the reviews of the best outdoor basketball shoes. If you have any queries or experience to share, do comment! If you happen to buy a pair from our list, don’t forget to comment here!

About the author

Justin Parker

Justin Parker is a 26-year old blogger. He is a Software Engineer who loves Blogging. He likes to test out different products and to write reviews on it to help others in choosing the best product from the market!

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