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The Best Basketball Shoes of 2017: My Picks So Far!

Almost five months in and we already have some truly kick-ass performance releases. Some of these are already in my main rotation. So what’s waiting for us later in the year could be CRAZY. I present you my personal picks of the best basketball shoes of 2017 so far.

This time, I’ll show you eight shoes that are all killer in terms of comfort, performance, materials and a reasonable price. The best basketball shoes of 2017, here we go!




My Rating: 10/10 | Price: $115 | Weight: 14.07 oz | Type: Mid TopThe Best Basketball Shoes of 2017: Dame 3

One year later, the D Lillard line is still absolutely killing it. It’s not BOOST, it’s not Primeknit but it’s very difficult to find a more versatile shoe that does everything right for pretty much every player or playstyle out there. And it’s really cheap. What more could you possibly need from a hoop shoe?

The Dame 3 has full-length BOUNCE cushioning and the upper is called FUSEDMESH which is basically mesh coated in TPU.

That’s the thing with the shoe. No flaws. Zero. I legitimately didn’t have any complaints and that’s why it’s rated at 10. Traction – beastly, good for outdoors. Fit – awesome, as long as you go down half a size. Cushion – BOUNCE is soooooo good here.

Support – killer, every feature you need for proper support & lockdown. The upper – may look plasticky or cheap at first but it doesn’t feel that way at all.  It plays super nice – breathable, mobile and plenty of ventilation. 





My Rating: 9.5/10 | Price: $140 | Weight: 13.8 oz | Type: Low TopThe Best Basketball Shoes of 2017: Crazy Explosive Low Primeknit

The regular Crazy Explosive was my favorite shoe of 2016 and its new Low Top counterpart with a Primeknit upper just takes another step further. I’ll tell you this – you WILL NOT find a more comfortable basketball shoe right now. No bullsh*t.

The CE Low Primeknit has full-length BOOST cushioning and the upper is pure Primeknit with some overlays for durability.

Like I said, they absolutely killed it with the fit and comfort. Everything just screams comfort and luxury. The Primeknit upper, the super bouncy and plush cushion, the amazing support for a soft upper, the one bootie upper with crazy soft internal padding and zero break-in time. Trust me, you’ll love wearing these.

But comfort aside and you have a superb all-around performer too. BOOST has never been better, traction is sick as long as you stay indoors, support is amazing for this kind of upper. I always need lots of support from my shoes and these didn’t let me down. Not one bit.




My Rating: 9/10 | Price: $110 | Weight: 13.05 oz | Type: Low TopThe Best Basketball Shoes of 2017: PG1

Paul George’s first signature was definitely a successful one, in my opinion. Once again, versatility and balance are the keys here and even though there’s not super crazy BOOST cushion or a premium woven upper, the shoe still kicks butt in terms of doing pretty much everything right and sits at a budget price.

The PG1 has a ZOOM unit in the forefoot and a Phylon midsole for cushioning, Flywire cables and the upper is mesh & Fuse up front, nubuck at the back.

Don’t let the basic tech specs fool you. I legitimately loved playing in these. It’s that feeling when you put a shoe on, go play and just forget that you got something on your feet. That’s what the PG1 accomplished. Basic but responsive cushion, great traction (not that weak too), killer setup for pretty much everyone.

I did need to break these in since the materials aren’t soft and I have a slightly wide foot. But once I did that, the fit was perfect.




My Rating: 9/10 | Price: $100 | Weight: 12 oz | Type: Low TopThe Best Basketball Shoes of 2017: Zoom Live 2017

This one could be a shocker for some of you but this was one of the best low budget releases out there from Nikey. At a super low price of $100, it’s as good as it can get. Take away the basic cushion setup and you have yourself a shoe that can compete with most of the mainstream signatures.

The Zoom Live 2017 has a ZOOM unit in the forefoot and a Phylon midsole for cushioning and the upper is mesh with Nylon under it to back it up, as well as Fuse layers on high-wear areas.

Just like the PG1, this might seem a very cheap and basic shoe but it doesn’t play that way at all. It’s sooo well-done with all the performance aspects being solid, you just forget that you have shoes on. Of course, the cushion on these might not be for super athletic & explosive players who need lots impact protection. 

But it’s not a shoe for everyone and the rest is awesome.  Traction is amazing and not sensitive to dust at all (decent for outdoors), support is nicely done and a low top wear will appreciate how these hold your foot. The upper is pretty basic but that saves you money and it’s actually functional. You get breathability, mobility and it’s durable thanks to that Nylon and Fuse.




My Rating: 8.5/10 | Price: $110 | Weight: 11.36 oz | Type: Mid TopThe Best Basketball Shoes of 2017: AJ B. Fly

Definitely didn’t expect much from AJ’s budget line. It’s rare that we get a cheap Air Jordan shoe but this is one of them and it performs really well. This is the case where you get premium tech and materials for a low price. Well done AJ, you’re somewhat learning.

The Jordan B. Fly has an identical cushion setup to the two shoes above – a ZOOM unit in the forefoot and Phylon midsole. The upper is that amazing Performance Woven.

Right off the bat, I loved the shoe’s fit. For a wide foot, these literally fit perfect for me with zero flaws. Cushioning is basic but sometimes that Phylon foam can be softer than others and this one of those softer foams used. Traction is solid but not durable enough for outdoors. Support is nothing to complain about – all the most important features are there.

The real sweet spot of the shoe is the upper. The same Performance Woven used on the AJ XX9. Ant that’s CRAZY for a shoe with a $110 price tag. How does it feel? What do you expect? Awesome. In every way.




My Rating: 9/10 | Price: $100 | Weight: 10.5 oz | Type: Low TopThe Best Basketball Shoes of 2017: Kobe Mamba Instinct

A rebranded Mentality, this is a very simple but effective package for any outdoor player out there. That’s right, it’s perfect for outdoors and you still get solid all-around performance. And they don’t break the bank at all.

The Mamba Instinct has a drop-in Lunarlon midsole for cushioning and the upper is Flyweave with Fuse on high-wear areas.

The best words to describe the shoe would be simple, minimal, mobile, effective. That’s what the shoe is. It’s simple – doesn’t have any premium tech or materials. It’s minimal – the upper is very light and you can pretty much bend the shoe in half once you take out the midsole.

It’s mobile – amazing responsive thanks to Lunarlon, flexibility at its finest, comfortable and just awesome to pay in if you’re a quick guard. Effective – the word says it all. Everything works well. Traction, cushion, support, the upper are all solid.




My Rating: 9/10 | Price: $120 | Weight: 13.04 oz | Type: Mid TopThe Best Basketball Shoes of 2017: Kyrie 3

Now, this is not going to be for everyone. This is very low-profile guard orientated shoe. Don’t bother buying these if you’re a heavy athletic player. But if you do fit the criteria for this one, then this is an excellent buy.

The Kyrie 3 has a ZOOM unit in the heel and a Phylon midsole for cushion, Flywire cables and the upper is mesh with Fuse. So no tech changes from the Kyrie 2.

Another cheap model that offers a lot for the price. You just have to understand what you’re getting. And you’re getting a very responsive cushion setup with court feel as a primary focus. Then you get absolutely FIRE traction that’s good for outdoors. You also get great support and finally, a basic upper that does the job. Just give them some break-in time and they’ll feel fine.




My Rating: 8/10 | Price: $200 | Weight: 13.05 oz | Type: Low TopThe Best Basketball Shoes of 2017: Kobe A.D. NXT

Last on the list is the upgraded Kobe A.D. version. A great improvement over the sh*tty Kobe A.D. if you’re up to spending $200 on these, then these will suit you nicely.

The A.D. NXT has a drop-in Lunarlon midsole with an implemented ZOOM unit in the heel for cushioning. Then they have the Flywire cables system and the upper is a Flyknit shroud coated in TPU on top, mesh as the main upper.

I’ll tell you that this isn’t a spectacular shoe but it was really nice to feel a clear improvement from the regular A.D. Cushioning felt pretty balanced with some impact protection in the heel and response in the forefoot. Traction was fine, though it was very sensitive to dust. Support is really nice with all the features, plus that Flyknit piece that locks your foot in really well.



Alright! I hope you found this special best of 2017 list helpful! Sooo many great releases and so early in the year.

What you MUST check out are last year’s best shoes. That’s right, 2016 was probably the biggest year for basketball sneakers I’ve lived in so far!

I wanna hear your thoughts on this. Which one will you be picking up? Do you have a question or need advice?


2 thoughts on “The Best Basketball Shoes of 2017: My Picks So Far!”

  1. Peter says:

    Hi, been reading your reviews almost every time I’m about to buy a new shoes,or maybe looking for a new shoes, btw I’m from India, I find your reviews very helpful but unfortunately most of Nike shoes aren’t available here like the Jordan’s,LeBron ,Kd etc , most of the Nike shoes available here are the cheap ones like the soldier,,kd trey and thats when I really like your website covering even the cheap ones, I’d said the cheap ones but not exactly sure about that tho even the pg1 isn’t available lol. Adidas do provide a huge selection tho, im playing in outdoors most of the time, I’m eying on the d rose 7 as it got 55% off should I buy it this day? Oh and d rose 7 available here all got translucent outsole are they durable? Lastly can you please update your list of the best outdoor shoes. I even bought the clb 16 after seeing your list of the best outdoor shoes, they’re damn nice. Thank you

    1. Julius Kralikas says:

      The Rose 7 is great overall, so if you’ve been eying on it and there’s a 55% off, get it. It’s not a durable as the Rose 6 outdoors but I think you can still try to rack up some games in the park. As far translucent rubber goes, I actually think adidas is doing a great job and there’s barely any difference between solid and translucent rubber when it comes to traction and reliability.

      I’ve been away from the website for quite some time now and I don’t have a specific timestamp of when I’ll get back into the swing of things, I’m having some problems. When I will, updating the outdoor shoe list is one of my top priorities.

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