While most superstar basketball players wear simply a signature sneaker, Kobe Bryant rocks the "Kobe 8 System." Nike has unveiled their latest shoe designed specifically for Bryant and it contains the advanced tech you should expect to find in the 5-time NBA champion's latest kicks.
The Kobe 8 System is touted as being built on four pillars; speed, precision, vision and versatility. The result is the LA Lakers' lowest and lightest sneaker to date, weighing in at 9.6 ounces in a men's size nine. The snakeskin print is a homage to Kobe's nickname, the Black Mamba, as well as a nod to 2013 being the year of the snake in the Chinese calendar.
"I'm always focused on improving my game, to perform at my best. I want my shoes to mimic the speed of my game," said in a press statement. "By shaving fractions off the height and weight, it allows me to play faster with more control so I can maneuver across the court – I want to feel like I'm moving at the speed of light."
The Kobe 8 System features engineered mesh (the first time its been used in a basketball shoe), a full-length Lunarlon midsole, herringbone traction with a snake scale inspired design, a 3-D anatomical heel counter and more. Besides having the latest basketball tech, the shoe looks damn good.
The Kobe 8 System will be available globally in the black/sulfure colorway on December 20th. The Python colorway launches first in China on January 12th, 2013 before hitting North America on February 2nd, 2013.
Check out video designer Eric Avar, who worked closely with Bryant on the shoe's creation, explain the development of the Kobe 8 System below. Be sure to peep detailed photos of the new sneaker, and Kobe at the reveal press conference, in the gallery.