Kobe Mentality REVIEW: A “Street Shoe”

So the second Kobe Mentality came out not long ago. But today, we’re talking about the first shoe. Sounds weird, right? Well, the reason for that is I want to compare the two models since they’re soooo similar. The first one is on sale now at some stores (during the time this review has been published), so for people who can’t spend $100 on the Mentality II, the first one might be an option.

Just as my usual reviews, we will be taking a look at the shoe’s appearance, technologies, performance, comfort and price aspects. And we’ll compare it to the Mentality II a bit along the way.

At the end of the review, I’ll give my final word on the shoe, as well as list the pros & cons. Finally, pricing and best places to buy will also be listed at the bottom. Let’s stard the Kobe Mentality review!

Lastly, if the shoe ends up to be pretty weak, I’ll recommend something better in the same category.

 

Main Specs

Shoes: Nike Kobe Mentality

Weight: 280.6 g. / 9.9 oz

Type: Low Top Sneaker

Price range: $75 – $100

Technologies: Lunarlon, HyperFuse

Fit: True to Size

My Rating: 7.5/10

Buy on Amazon


 

FEATURES

  • Classic herringbone traction pattern

  • Fuse with mesh upper

  • Kobe’s signature markings

  • Removable Lunarlon midsole

  • Available in 8 different colors

 


 

APPEARANCE

 

Kobe Mentality: Full View

 

So first and foremost, this is just like any Kobe shoe. Typical low-profile look, very low and flat. It does look a bit different from the second model. But it’s really similar to the Kobe 8. Basically, Kobe’s shoe fans will definitely appreciate the design.

Let’s see how it looks compared to the Mentality II:

Kobe Mentality II
Kobe Mentality II
Kobe Mentality
Kobe Mentality

 

So not too many changes after all. Which one is better looking, I will leave you to decide yourself.

 

THE TECH

 

Kobe Mentality: Outsole

The shoe has a removable Lunarlon midsole for the cushioning setup. If you have the right shoes, you can swap the midsoles to get the customize your experience. It’s compatible with the Kobe 8, Kobe 9 and LeBron 12.

HyperFuse is used as the main upper material instead of Flyweave, which is used for the Mentality II. This is probably the place where the first shoe falls behind a bit, but not much. Find out why in just a second.

TIP: If you don’t know what all these weird names such as “Lunarlon” or “Flyweave” mean, go to my Shoe Tech page. There, I explain all the most popular shoe technologies in a very basic, beginner-friendly manner.

 

PERFORMANCE

Kobe Mentality: Top

Let’s kick things off with cushioning. I will say that this is one of the shoe’s strongest aspects. Remember, the original cost of the shoe WAS $100 (just the same as the Mentality 2). But it has been out for some time now and you can pick it up for a lot less (for $75 during the review). For a premium LUNARLON setup, I think this is a steal.

As far as performance, nothing amazing, but nothing horrible. It feels good, responsive and just proper. Low profile guards who don’t prefer explosiveness will definitely like these. Cushioning is not soft and has minimal impact protection, so look somewhere else if you want that. But at the end of the day, you get a removable, light and responsive cushioning with good court feel. A solid setup for guards.

Traction is simply awesome. I said the same for the Mentality II and the first one uses the exact same thing. It’s a simple herringbone setup (for those who know these things). But the awesome thing is the pattern. It’s SUPER firm and durable. The teeth are just sharp and grip the floor amazingly. It’s a perfect outdoor player’s shoe since the pattern won’t burn out quickly. Very good stuff.

Kobe Mentality: Front

Support is not a very strong point of the shoe. It’s not terrible to the point where it’s unplayable though. There’s just not a lot of features holding the shoe and materials are a bit flimsy. Foot containment is solid and you won’t slide out or anything.

If an ankle injury is a rare thing for you, then I think this is a good choice. As long as you know how to move and are a bit careful, there’s nothing to worry about.

Still, players with a need of good support should stay away from the Kobe Mentality.

As far as materials, the upper is made out of Fuse and has some mesh for ventilation and flexibilty. It’s not a bad setup, but it’s part of the reason why support is lackluster. Materials are flimsy, light and a bit unbalanced in my opinion.

It’s still Fuse though, so the shoe will be somewhat durable and mesh will add some flexibility and ventilation. It’s definitely not the best choice in terms of materials, but again, in gets the job done.

Lastly, let’s talk about fit and comfort. So like I mentioned, materials make the shoe a bit too loose and flimsy, so you won’t get that snug, tight fit. They fit true to size though. Overall, there’s some nice padding inside the shoe and the Lunarlon midsole feels good. Kobe Mentality’s outsole is completely flat, so you’re getting good stability and court feel. Not a good option for flat footers though.

 

PRICE VS. QUALITY

Kobe Mentality: Heel

 

The shoe originally retailed for $100. Prices are little bit different in some stores because the shoe is out for a while now. There some discounts that slice the price almost halfway down.

Taking all that aside though, 100 bucks is definitely a price that’s worth paying for a shoe like that. It doesn’t have anything crazy, but Lunarlon cushioning alone makes this an option. I say QUALITY wins over price.

 

Kobe Mentality Review: FINAL VERDICT 

Kobe Mentality: Side

Overall, the Nikey Kobe Mentality isn’t a disappointment. The shoe has a removable Lunarlon midsole which is responsive. Traction is AWESOME both indoors and outdoors with no durability issues. Support is really minimal, but it fits a low profile guard. The upper is a bit too loose and a more snug fit would be better.

You need to consider that this is a cheap shoe. Don’t expect premium tech and materials thrown in. So looking at that price, the Kobe Mentality is a solid guard’s shoe.

You should keep in mind that the Kobe Mentality II is out now and it costs 20-30 bucks more. It has some improvements, so at the end of the day, there’s no big reason to buy the first one unless you really wanna save that cash. Or you’re waiting for a sale.

PROS

  • Responsive, removable Lunarlon midsole

  • Amazing and durable traction even outdoors

  • Very light

CONS

  • Minimal support, no real features

  • Loose and flimsy fit

  • Very flat and no impact protection


 

Best Place to Buy the Kobe Mentality

I see one main store to buy from and it’s on Amazon. Check this out:

Benefits of Buying from Amazon

  • Extremely fast shipping (1-3 days)
  • Free shipping most of the time
  • You can return the shoes to get your money back
  • Very fast & easy buying process
  • Lots of sales and discounts

So yeah, there’s a reason I always recommend to buy from Amazon. 

Amazon


RECOMMENDED ALTERNATIVERecommended Alternative: Nike Kobe Mentality II

NIKE KOBE MENTALITY II

Yeah, I do recommend the second shoe since it has some nice improvements and a better upper.

The Mentality II has Lunarlon cushioning and the upper is Flyweave.

They’re very comfortable, they have a similar cushion setup, the same killer traction and a lightweight lunarlon upper.


Hope you enjoyed my Kobe Mentality review!