Right away, I’m going to tell you that the popularity of high-tops is decreasing and has already decreased pretty significantly. That means big shoe brands such as Nike, Air Jordan, adidas or Under Armour is barely making any high-tops.
Regardless, there are still SOME good high shoes left. So for those who still like and appreciate them, let’s take a look at the best high top basketball shoes right now.
My #1 Recommendation: NIKE LEBRON SOLDIER IX
So this barely fits in the high-top category, but since most retailers categorize them in the “high top” section, this is worth a mention.
If you will read my full review of the LeBron Soldier IX, you will soon find out just how good they are.
When you’re looking for high-tops, you’re probably looking for great support, right? Well, it’s safe to say that these shoes have the best support in any shoe of 2015. Period.
Combine support with traction, durability, effective cushioning and a very affordable price and you get a monster of a shoe. On top of that, you get a legit LeBron James signature that kicks the LeBron 13’s butt.
Best Aspect: SUPPORT
My #2 Recommendation: NIKE HYPERPOSITE 2
This is a true big men’s shoe. You don’t hear that very often these days. But take away that, you can still ball in them while being a guard or a small forward. Balance is the key to success in a basketball sneaker.
For being a high-top, the Nike HyperPosite 2 is a great choice for balanced performance. Its highlight feature is the awesome 360 full-length ZOOM AIR cushioning. It also has solid grip, obviously good support and well-built materials.
Best Aspect: CUSHIONING
UNDER ARMOUR CLUTCHFIT HIGHLIGHT DRIVE 2
This is a SUPER high top shoe. If you can’t already tell that from the photo, I’ll tell you that they’re really damn high. There’s been a lot of times when that didn’t really work. But in this case, it did.
Under Armour Clutchfit Drive Highlight 2 is yet another well-balanced shoe. It is cool to see that this huge “big men’s” shoe can do lots of things right. I wouldn’t recommend them to a guard, but anyone over the first two positions could definitely wear them.
They also got solid traction and the SpeedForm heelcup technology. For a full spec overview and review, click the link above.
Best Aspect: VERSATILITY
NIKE HYPERDUNK 2014
Last year’s Hyperdunk wasn’t as impressive as the 2014 version. That’s pretty sad. What’s not sad is the 2014 version was considered to be one of the best shoes in the Hyperdunk series. It is a great all-in-one package not only for bigs.
The Hyperdunk 2014 has all it needs: ZOOM AIR cushioning with impact protection, solid materials with durability in mind, awesome ankle and heel lockdown, FLYWIRE for anti-sliding. It is a light shoe, so even guards could consider this option.
The prices are also down, since it’s not the most recent Hyperdunk now.
Best Aspect: BANG FOR YOUR BUCK
NIKE KOBE X ELITE
The original Kobe X was a solid performer. The Elite version doesn’t bring much more to the table, but it still had some improvements. The materials were changed to mostly Flyknit, and of course, that tall ankle collar is added. It works well because Flyknit is light, soft, flexible and extremely pleasant to wear. The Flyknit collar makes it really comfortable, but also flexible when you need it.
Apart from that, you still got solid Kobe X’s performance. Good indoor traction, support, FLYWIRE and ZOOM AIR mixed with Lurnarlon for cushioning. It is a lighweight compact shoe mixed with big men’s high ankle collar – the result is quite nice.
Check out my initial Kobe 10 review, if you’re interested.
Best Aspect: MATERIALS
NIKE LEBRON 13
Again, barely fits into the high-top category, but since the selection is so scarce, I had to put it in. After all, it is an awesome basketball shoe, believe it or not.
I mentioned that the Soldier 9 beats this one. And it’s true, but that doesn’t mean THIS ONE is horrible. Far from that, actually.
Support is plenty with a great implementation of FLYWIRE. The collar is pretty sturdy thanks to the additional HyperPosite layers. You also have two ZOOM AIR units for responsive cushioning. Lastly, durability really shines on this shoe. Those plastic looking HyperPosite layers protect the mesh form deforming and in result you have an unkillable shoe.
Best Aspect: DURABILITY
NIKE KOBE IX ELITE
Kobe IX itself was everyone’s favorite Kobe shoe. Their traction has always stood out as the best among the best. Well, this model is pretty much the same thing with a few changes.
So, it is right off the bat, a great shoe. It has full-length Lunarlon cushioning, which is more responsive than ZOOM AIR. It also has KILLER support thanks to its carbon fiber plate on the heel, TPU heel counter, flat outsole and a high ankle collar, which actually works.
You’ve probably heard it somewhere already, but it is the first time Nike has ever implemented the Flyknit material onto a basketball shoe. Yep, this shoe made history.
Best Aspect: TRACTION
ADIDAS CRAZY EXPLOSIVE PRIMEKNIT 2017
The Adidas Crazy Explosive Primeknit 2017 has an easy and comfortable feel to it, whether you wear it on or take it off. That’s because the upper is made of Primeknit material which provides durability and support, but at the same time it does not feel too rigid. The TPU waves further reinforce the upper without compromising flexibility, so the wearer will still feel a significant mobility.
Ballers will absolutely love the full-length Boost cushioning because of its responsiveness and ability to absorb shock. In terms of traction, it has an excellent grip on the floor and it works in any types of surfaces, whether they be on clean or dusty courts.
Best Aspect: MATERIALS
REEBOK SHAQ ATTAQ
This collaborative release between Reebok and Shaquille O’Neal reflects the retired NBA star’s unique playing style and personality. It is the first Reebok sneaker to use the Graphlite shank, which makes the shoe feel lighter and more stable compared to previous releases.
Do not dismiss this “retro” shoe, whose original version was first released in 1995. Many people still purchase the Reebok Shaq Attaq because of its durability and comfort.
Best Aspect: GRAPHLITE SHANK
NIKE LEBRON 15
The Nike LeBron 15 is another heavy favorite, aside from the fact that it’s NBA star LeBron James’ signature sneaker. The level of comfort of this shoe is, if it’s indeed said appropriately, “insane” – it’s due to the combination of Air Max and Zoom cushioning. Plus, the upper is made of Battleknit, a type of Flyknit that’s more durable and comfortable.
The traction, meanwhile, is mostly solid and reliable. The sharp triangle patterns on the outsole make a firm “bite” on the hard court floor. Another good news about the traction is that it doesn’t attract a lot of dirt, so wiping the outsole is not needed.
Best Aspect: CUSHIONING
That’s it for this spotlight. You may have noticed almost all of the shoes are Nikey’s. It is surprising that they still make these kind of shoes today. Go ahead and take a look at adidas’s or Air Jordan’s shoes. Good luck finding high-tops there.
Alright, thanks for reading my picks of the best high top basketball shoes! Share the post if you liked it and as usual,