Constantly following the NBA Playoffs opens your eyes to the footwear culture of the stars of the court – the champions.
There was a time when all you could see were heavy, bulky high-tops running around the court of play. It almost seemed like the magic was in wearing bulky kicks, so, they thrived in the market. But as time went on, players like Gilbert Arenas started sporting laced up signature low-tops. This was just seen as a rebellion stint.
However, when the Kobe IV was released in 2018, the NBA champion’s signature shoes stirred up the revolution. And now, people have realized that heavy and bulky didn’t translate to stardom.
A star on the court was a star in and out of his basketball shoes. Now, we see players exploding from the hard court into the air with super quick, responsive, mobile, and cloud-light basketball shoes.
The lightweight basketball shoes allow players to run past defenders with great speed to execute almost flawless fastbreaks. In this article, we will take a look at the lightest basketball shoes and what they have to offer in addition to their light weight.
Some Of The Lightest Basketball Shoes
In ascending order of weights, find below the lightest basketball shoes that can hold their own anywhere.
1. Kobe AD NXT 360
Isn’t it just right that we start with the lightweight basketball shoes of the man referred to as The Mamba who forever changed the footwear game in the NBA with his lightweight low top?
Not only will he be remembered for the way he played the game he lived for, he will also be remembered for the low-top revolution his signature basketball shoes, Kobe IV popularized.
Now to the shoe in focus. The Kobe AD NXT 360 which resurrects the Mamba’s on-court mentality and killer instinct weighs 11.08 ounces.
The shoe features the 360-degree Flyknit technology on the upper, which allows it to wrap your foot in all-round comfort. The Nike React Foam combination delivers you a springy response when you jump to move in for the kill and offers you a soft feel when you land.
The Flyknit upper has this sock-feel to it, so it acts like a second skin, providing you with lightweight flexibility and fantastic locked-in support.
The dual-density React along the edges of the Kobe-inspired patterned outsole plus the Lunarlon midsole is the perfect setup to offer you the spring-like response when you jump and soft support for your landings.
You are also guaranteed of an enhanced court feel as a thin web of rubber in the outsole gives you very efficient traction. So much beautiful efficiency in one piece, just like the Mamba.
2. Nike LeBron 17 Monstars
These LeBron James latest signature kicks are all shades of lovely. But now, you won’t expect a monster to be lovely, would you?
The Nike LeBron 17 Monstars is both lovely and intimidating. This basketball shoe does not disappoint on the basketball court. It has got comfortable bounce cushioning, effective traction, great support, amazing containment, and adequate lockdown.
On top of having all these perfect features, it conveniently weighs 11.4 ounces.
The Nike LeBron 17 can be likened to being the King of the Court, as it has full-court control. The new KnitPosite technology which combines Flyknit construction with heat-molded and pre-twisted yarns which form swirled patterns produces the unique, durable, lightweight, and supportive shoe that is the Nike LeBron 17. It also comes with impressive stop-on-a-dime traction.
You will love the bounciness of the shoe’s forefoot Nike Zoom. It features the Nike Air Max unit which provides the heel with quick and continuous responsiveness needed to generate fast-paced action. You will have no worries putting on and taking off this shoe, as it provides a wide collar with the traditional tongue which also provides you with a comfortable, locked-in feel.
For a shoe with so much cushioning, the Nike LeBron 17 Monstars has a smooth heel-to-toe transition.
3. Under Armour Curry 5
According to the Under Armour website, the Curry 5 is programmed for maximum unpredictability and was developed to help Stephen Curry optimize his on-court performance.
Its weight of 11.64 ounces guarantees optimum speed and agility that you require to deliver well on the basketball court. The Curry 5 fits true to size, just as if it was made for your foot alone.
Among the shoe’s design elements are the traction, which makes for quick multidimensional movements on any surface, and the full-knit construction, which makes the shoe look nice and feel comfortable to the foot.
The cushioning of this basketball shoe is an improved version of the one on Curry 4. Better underfoot responsiveness is delivered by the EVA cushioning in the midsoles, which offers a little more bounce than the one on its predecessor, the Under Armour Curry 4. Plus, they deliver amazing lockdown and support.
4. Men’s Under Armour Heat Seeker
This shoe’s 11.64 ounces is attributed to its engineered knit upper. The strategically placed perforations enhance the shoe’s breathability, while the die-cut EVA sockliner offers underfoot cushioning and support.
You are guaranteed a snug, bootie-like fit with the extended ankle collar. A sturdy heel counter keeps provides you with locked-in support and additional structure.
Lateral containment and increased lateral stability are achieved with the molded EVA midsole carrier and the 3D shank which wraps around the sidewall.
You get maximum floor control and grip as The Under Armour Heat Seeker has a full-length rubber outsole that comes with the herringbone thread pattern. This offered traction prevents you from slipping around the court.
Not only is this basketball shoe lightweight, comfortable, and functional, it is also durable. The no-sew overlay protects it against toe drag, thereby, increasing its durability.
5. Nike Zoom Freak 1
12 ounces is the weight of Giannis Antetokounpo’s debut signature shoe from Nike. The shoe offers speed, power, and control.
The Nike Zoom Freak 1 provides all the responsive cushioning, multidirectional traction, and forefront lockdown that are needed to complement the freakishly athletic game that basketball players like Giannis play. You can join this league of giants.
The shoe comes with double-stacked cushioning under the heel for hard impacts and extra responsiveness for getting around the court. The geometric traction pattern of the outsole provides you with a grip for quick, multidirectional movements on the court.
When you lace up the Nike Zoom Freak 1, internal bands lock down over the forefoot, keeping you fully contained and stable. A rubber clip extends from the outsole up the side providing you with lateral support, while the padded collar locks you in at the heel.
This is a basketball shoe that tells a phenomenal story: the story of a boy who had it rough but was able to get through by a support system provided by his family and immediate community.
A section of the outsole has the following message molded into it: “I am my father’s legacy.” This, together with the design of roses, are in remembrance of his late father, Charles.
The outer midsole bears the names of his parents, Veronica and Charles, while the heel has the names of his four brothers. And because of his gratitude to the community, Giannis specially requested that the Nike Freak 1 should not be retailed for more than $120.
6. Reebok Unisex BB 4600
This 12-ounce basketball shoe makes your stay on the court very comfortable. Its die-cut EVA midsole guarantees lightweight cushioning so your foot is well-rested as you play or work out.
Its rubber sole features the herringbone thread pattern that provides you impeccable responsiveness as exceptional traction is guaranteed.
Did we mention that it is done in full-grain leather? Yes, it is. The leather gives it a soft, flexible feel. Overall, it is a great high cut shoe with a nice retro effect to it.
7. Under Armour Curry 3Zero2
The traction of the Curry 3Zero2 is amazing. It works extremely well on all surfaces; not just on the hard court, but outdoors, as well.
This high-top basketball shoe weighs 12.06 ounces and was designed to perform optimally during a basketball game. The shoe comes with a two-piece outsole that is built with an extended lateral wrap that ensures 360 degrees traction and containment.
Although the Under Armour Curry 3Zero2 lacks a traditional heel counter, the mix of Micro Micro G® foam with Charged Cushioning® under the heel provides an effective mix of responsiveness, comfort, and protection from impacts.
The die-cut EVA sockliner provides you with underfoot cushioning and support. The cushioning of the Curry 3Zero2 supersedes that of more expensive Curry signature models.
The shoe’s molded maxprene upper comes with a zonal restriction that is engineered from within together with the tongue construction to guarantee maximum comfort and breathability.
With the shoe’s singular webbed lace system, your foot is wrapped and locked in it. The shoe has a great heel-to-toe transition, and it fits true to size.
And all its materials combine to make the Curry 3Zero2 a soft, comfortable, and very supportive shoe.
8. Nike Hyperdunk X
This shoe was launched as the Tenth Anniversary celebration edition of the Hyperdunk line, Nike’s basketball icon.
Weighing an impressive 12.08 ounces, Hyperdunk X didn’t disappoint its predecessors down the line. Featuring the Nike Zoom Air technology like other Hyperdunks before it, this tenth edition offers responsive cushioning to your forefoot and heel, and phenomenal protection against impacts.
With this shoe, you will enjoy comfort all the way, as it comes with a three-quarter bootie that stretches for ease of entry.
With its dynamic lacing system that uses oversized laces that wrap around the foot, you are guaranteed a secure fit and enhanced lockdown.
The shoe’s mesh upper feels lightweight and plush, enhancing its durability and providing breathability to your foot. The wavy traction pattern is effective and reliable as expected of any shoe in the Nike Hyperdunk line, lightweight or not.
9. Adidas Performance Men’s CrazyLight Boost 2018
As the name mildly suggests, these are high performance basketball shoes. This shoe was designed to improve your performance on the court with a lethal combination of speed and agility, in addition to its weight of 12.3 ounces.
The partially caged full-length Boost delivers super-responsive cushioning that keeps you low to the ground, providing you with impact protection and delivering energy return, while the TPU wrap adds support for amazing side-to-side movements.
The breathable mesh upper keeps the shoe ventilated so that your foot can stay dry of sweat after each game.
With its half-bootie construction and the highly-stretchable Neoprene tongue which is half-stitched to the upper, you shouldn’t have any problems putting the shoe on and taking it off.
The CrazyLight Boost 2018 comes with lace closure and webbing eyelets which help eliminate any form of heel spillage while efficiently locking your heels in place better than previous versions of the Adidas CrazyLight Boost.
This shoe’s multidirectional traction performs extremely well in all conditions, whether it is hard cuts, lateral movements, or some-and-go action.
There is no need to worry about slipping or sliding around the court. Not with this shoe on. Being neither too narrow nor too wide, it is evenly spaced.
Once dust is introduced, the few wider grooves act as exit ducts for dust to keep the bottom clean. The rubber makes it even more perfect, so, the shoe isn’t restricted from outdoor use.
10. Nike Kyrie Flytrap II
This shoe was designed to complement Kyrie Irving’s game, offering secure containment without compromising on agility.
You can get some of that Irving magic for yourself, too. With the flexible soles of this Nike Kyrie shoe, you are guaranteed to maintain traction no matter how swift the transitions you have to make on the court.
The Nike Kyrie Flytrap II has a modified herringbone outsole pattern that provides tested and proven edgy traction necessary for basketball’s multidirectional movements.
You are sure to enjoy energy-returning cushioning with this shoe. With a weight of 13.05 ounces, you won’t find the Nike Kyrie Flytrap II bulky on your feet.
11. Air Jordan XXXIV
With a weight of 13.1 ounces, this shoe is regarded as the thirty-fourth incarnation of light, continuing the legacy of a cultural icon. The shoe seamlessly combines new and iconic design elements.
This shoe is designed to allow you to fly high and be light on your feet without compromising stability. The eclipse plate provides support and stability that come into play during side to side movements.
The Air Jordan XXXIV comes with the ultra-responsive Zoom Air cushioning under the heel and forefoot that recharges your every stride. You are assured of a trusted traction while on the court, as the herringbone outsole offers multidirectional traction.
Its light weight and breathability are ensured by the mix of textiles and translucent materials that give the upper a snug and comfortable fit.
And every time you look down to see the “Flight” Jumpman design on the tongue top, you will be reminded to get back up in the air because you were made to soar. And this shoe will enable optimal explosion off the foot.