Nike Basketball used to be the dopest thing out.
The colorways were creative and inspiring (Lebron South Beach, KD Aunt Pearl, Kobe Mambacurial to name a few). Everything except the most widely available general releases would blow off the shelves, and sneakerheads around the world had piles and piles of orange Nike boxes stacked up high in their rooms. Yeah, Nike Basketball was the best.
But around the release of the LeBron 11 and the KD 7, a strange thing started happening: Nike Basketball releases (even the hyped ones) were sitting. Resell prices plummeted. You could get grails like Big Bang Lebron 9’s for a fraction of what they used to cost, as most of their owners were frantically trying to unload them.
Why did this happen? Why did a line of shoes that was so coveted and desired take a total nosedive in the matter of a few short years?
We’re of the opinion that it was a combination of a few things. First off, we all know the sneaker industry is a fickle one. Tastes change quickly, and trends are always rising and falling. The demand for simple, clean sneakers may have made it tough for the loud, garish, high-tech Nike Basketball shoes to stay relevant … and there’s a good chance that the rise of Adidas (and anything with Kanye West’s stamp on it too) may have cut into Nike Basketball’s cool factor.
Also let’s be honest … the designs weren’t as innovative and interesting as they used to be. Rehashing the same colors year after year and slapping them on new models can only go on for so long before sneaker heads grow tired of it. The “What The” concept was amazing the first few years … not so much after that.
And finally, some of the new releases just weren’t all that wearable. We understand that they’re performance shoes first and foremost, but the best shoes perform well on the court and look great on the street as well. You’ve got to have that perfect combo if you really want to have a classic.
Shouts to Nike Basketball though. They’re still going strong, making great performance footwear, and outselling all other basketball shoes by a wide margin. We just can’t help but wish for the old days, when the luster of their releases was higher.
What do you think of Nike Basketball? Do you still wear any of their shoes casually? What’s your favorite Nike Basketball release ever? Let us know in the comments or on Twitter, check our Facebook page for daily updates, and, as always, be sure to follow us on Instagram for all the fire sneaker pictures you can handle.