Saturday, February 26, 2011

Kobe Bryant's Nike Shoe Empire

KOBE BRYANT...(aka Black Mamba, aka Bean Bryant) is an all-star player with his own line of sneakers sponsored by Nike. With 6 different versions of his sneaker out, it's hard to decipher which one is right for you.

The Nike Air Zoom Kobe I was collaborated with graffiti artist and Nike collaborator Stash. This first official shoe of Kobe's made it's debut during the Lakers and Heat game Christmas Day 2005, but was on sale nationwide February 10, 2006 along with his Nike clothing line. These shoes have a thick looking sole and look kind of stiff.

In 2007, Kobe introduced the Nike Zoom Kobe II (ZKII) to the public. This shoe line called "Weapons of War" combined 3 separate basketball shoes of the Zoom Kobe Sheath, Strength, and Lite. According to Kobe's expectations, this shoe provided speed, strength, traction, increased flexibility, and support. Average price runs between $130-$150.

In January 2008, Kobe released the Nike Zoom Kobe III which was more of a softer looking shoe covered with a netting design.

The Hyperdunks launched April 7, 2008, where Kobe regarded them as the "lightest and strongest basketball shoe ever." These were the shoes used by the U.S. Mens Pro Basketball Team at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games. This shoe represents different players by having its own colors and characters. This shoe was made ultra famous by the commercial of Kobe jumping over an Ashton Martin full speed. Price range runs between $100-$140.

With the success of the Hyperdunks, Kobe released the Nike Zoom Kobe IV which was a basketball shoe, but didn't look like a typical one. This version features a reptile print on the heel and toe box along with a translucent midsole. The tongue on the shoes have the phrase "Carpe Diem" which in Latin means "Seize the Day."

The Nike Zoom Kobe V was available January 16, 2010 and was the lightest shoes ever made by Nike. The design of the lower top was inspired by the footwear of soccer players and this shoe has skins of snake scale and shark fin.

Kobe's shoe for the 2011 NBA season are the Nike Zoom Kobe VI which look like the Kobe V, but have a netting (or snake skin) design throughout most of the shoe.

I don't know the exact reason for Kobe's sneaker line to be the most popular amongst the public, but love him or hate him, Kobe Bryant is very marketable. Not only is he one of the greatest basketball players of all time, but he knows what he wants when he decides to promote something. The thing that makes the Kobe line of sneakers "tick" is the great design, and it doesn't hurt that everyone wants to be like this superstar. The price range for almost all his shoes are $130-$200 depending on the style and type of edition you prefer. All I know is that Kobe's shoe empire will continue and leave a legacy in the basketball sneaker world.

You Just Do You, Imma Do Me


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