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Our Top Basketball Kicks of 2023 (So Far)

Our Top Basketball Kicks of 2023 (So Far)

clock-circular-outline Posted July 28, 2023

We select our favourite b-ball sneakers, so you don't have to

2023 has been a great year for basketball kicks (well, so far) and we know how important it is to cop the right pair of sneakers for your gameplay. Whether you’re hitting those outside courts on those warmer days, or getting ready for those pre-season warmups, there’s nothing better than a fresh pair of basketball shoes to get you in the mood.

To get you pumped for whatever the occasion may be, we've curated a list of our top basketball kicks of 2023 that are a must-have to your sneaker collection.

1. Puma Stewie 2 ‘Ruby'

Puma Stewie 2 'Ruby'

Release Date: May 19th, 2023
Where to buy: PUMA Website
Price: £100 ($129.27)

We kick off this countdown with New York Liberty’s very own Breanna Stewart and her signature basketball line with PUMA. 2023 saw the release of the Stewie 2 and this ‘Ruby’ addition not only paid homage to her flawless, on-court resilience but also the power and integrity motherhood brings, commemorating this shoe to her daughter, Ruby.

As if the backstory wasn’t enough, the silhouette was an absolute trailblazer! ‘Ruby’ accents of red draped the mesh upper, while TPU overlays add a decorative touch to the laterals. Other features include co-branded detailing on the tongues, a flame-wrapped heel, emblazoned with Ruby’s date of birth, coupled with its Nitro-infused outsole for that court-defining finish.

2. Puma MB.02 ‘Rick and Morty Adventures’

MB.02 'Rick and Morty'

Release Date: February 17th, 2023
Where to buy: PUMA Website
Price: £130 ( $174.51)

2021 Rookie of the Year and continuing to make waves on the NBA courts. LaMelo Ball is the man of the moment, and his PUMA MB.02 is just as outlandish as his court play. Now we’ve seen plenty of brightly coloured MB fits but one that certainly stands out is the ‘Rick and Morty’ rendition.

This court-inspired take on the popular Adult Swim animation is utterly distinctive, the knit mesh upper comes in a mix-match colour blocking, with gradients of green and purple accommodating the left foot, while the right foot takes on a yellow-orange-pink colour scheme. Flame-wrapped overlays are a nod to LaMelo's boldness on those courts, while Rick and Morty's branding delivers character to the heel, insole and wordmark sits above the toe cap - now who said making a statement wasn’t easy?

3. Harden Vol.7 ‘Red Luxury’

Harden Vol.7 'Luxury Red'

Release Date: March 2nd, 2023
Where to buy: adidas Website

Price: £123.47 ($160)

A marriage between luxury fashion and on-court functionality, the Harden Vol.7 has it all. The seventh signature iteration of 76ers point guard James Harden now comes in a ‘Luxury Red’ paint up and we’re obsessed with it.

Forming as part of adi’s ‘Remember The Why’ campaign, the fit arrived in a strikingly bold red upper, accompanied by stealthy tones of black which occupies the inner bootie, laces and the signature 3-stripes on the heel. Extra padding bolsters up the textile quarters for an extra supportive feel, while downstairs, the fit is equipped with a Jet Boost midsole for optimum stability and energy return.

4. Jordan Tatum 1 ‘Archer Ave’

Jordan Tatum 1 'Archer Ave'

Release Date: 15th April 2023
Where to buy: Nike Website
Price: £109.95 ($141.19)

In April, the Jordan brand introduced the Jordan ‘Tatum 1’ to its roster of athletic designs, giving the Boston Celtics star boy Jayson Tatum his first-ever signature shoe - and this one is brimming with nostalgia. Taking inspiration from the love of his hometown Archer Ave in St Louis, Missouri, this rendition was the perfect balance between b-ball performance and style.

Material-wise, this court icon landed in a mixed mesh body with accents of white making up the majority of the fit. TPU caging sculpts the lowers giving an ultra lockdown feel, while the signature Jumpman branding adds depth to the rears. Co-branding wordmark is gilded across the heel counter, and ‘Archer Ave’ inner tongue labels add that all-important sentiment that we also see through Tatum’s gameplay.


5. Nike Ja 1 ‘Light Smoke Grey’

Nike Ja 1 'Light Smoke Grey'

Release Date: 11th August 2023
Where to buy: Nike Website
Price: £85.66 ($110)

Despite this gem not dropping until August, the Nike Ja 1 ‘Light Smoke Grey’ is definitely on our cop list. Making Memphis Grizzlies icon Ja Morant the 23rd player in the NBA to secure a signature sneaker shoe with Nike. Creating hype since it was first seen on his feet during the Christmas Day game against the Golden State Warriors, the Nike Ja 1 offered a grail-like feel from the jump.

Sporting a durable synthetic upper, which was, in this case, coated in a soft grey and white palette. TPU enforcements deliver that extra element of sturdiness, traction-enhancing rubber offers plenty of grip on those hardwood floors, plus its phylon midsole is topped with Zoom Air units for a low-lying, reactive on-court experience.

6. LeBron NXXT Gen ‘Red/Black/Grey'

LeBron NXXT Gen

Release Date: February 10th, 2023
Where to buy: prodirectsport.com
Price: £120.90 ($160)

Over the 20 seasons that we have seen LeBron grace our courts with his ingenious court play, we have also seen as many shoe iterations, but with the LeBron NXXT Gen model, there is something a little more inspiring than what meets the eyes. To give you some context, LeBron had teamed up with gaming organisation Faze on this silhouette, to uplift and influence the next generation of athletes. Although this model resides at a slightly lower price point, it is certainly one for those young sneaker purists.

Boasting the iconic ‘Bred’ colour up, the shoe's mesh upper features an intricate monogram-like design in black and white, with engineered mesh covering the entire surface. On the medial side, there's a tumbled leather overlay in black, adorned with an iridescent Nike Swoosh and red stitching. The lateral side remains clean, showcasing the same Swoosh with a mini logo nearby, while a metallic "XX" dubrae accents the black nylon stripe on the heel. The tongue displays the FaZe team logo in red, alongside LeBron James' signature branding.

7. Curry 1 Flo Tro Low ‘Draft Day

Curry FloTro 'Draft Day'

Release Date: June 22, 2023
Where to buy: Underarmour website
Price: £115 ( $150)

From securing the MVP award in the 2014-2015 season to leading the Golden State Warriors to their first championship victory since 1975 in the same year, there isn’t much Stephen Curry can’t do on the courts. And if anything proves this, it would be his lucrative sneaker line with Under Armour, releasing his first shoe in 2015, the ‘UA Curry 1’. Fast Forward 8 years and 4 rings later, Under Armour pay tribute to the beginnings of any NBA star with the Curry 1 FloTro Low ‘Draft Day’.

With ‘Draft Day’ taking place on June 22nd, it was only right to have a signature sneaker to back it up. This rendition showcases a blend of pink, purple, and teal shades on the upper, complemented by a lighting bolt design on the sides, as a nod to the iconic Warriors logo. Finishing touches consist of a white Flow-cushioned sole for that responsive and comfy in-step feel.


8. Nike KD 15 ‘50 Years of Hip-Hop’

KD 15 '50 Years of Hip-Hop'

Release Date: June 15th, 2023
Where to buy: Kickscrew website
Price: £120.90 ($160)

Kevin Durant's passion for music has been evident throughout his career, culminating in collaborations with renowned producers 9th Wonder, Boi-1da, and Cardo for exclusive Nike KD 15 colourways. As he gears up for the release of his 16th signature shoe, Durant paid tribute to the 50-year celebration with an Off-White-inspired KD 15 rendition.

The design showcased dark shades with nylons along the tongue and inner lining, while the heel boasts a premium tumbled leather finish. A minimalist approach omits KD logos in favour of monochrome Hip-Hop tongue tags, consistent with the upcoming collection of footwear. Subtle cream accents on the upper forefoot, coupled with a vibrant "Sail" hue on the mid-foot caging system and Air Zoom midsole, draw inspiration from the iconic Virgil Abloh's design aesthetics. To finish, golden metallic microphone emblems and Easy Money branding adds character to the heel and insoles.

Tell us what your favourite basketball sneakers are in the comments below!

Make sure you check Our Top 7 Favourite UNC-Inspired Kicks of All Time





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