In 2008, Kobe Bryant started wearing a lowtop Nike, becoming the first big name dude in years to eschew ankle support to gain a little more agility. That was four years ago — and four shoes — so there was bound to be some changes. The latest version is what you see here, the Nike Zoom Kobe VII.

The biggest difference, as I’m sure you’ve noticed, is that there is a gigantic detachable bootie where the shoe’s tongue usually is. It’s an interesting look, kind of similar to the Air Max 2 Force Strong that came out when I was in 7th grade, and it almost guarantees these won’t be worn for anything but hooping. I mean, it’s hard to wear a shoe without a tongue and it is equally as hard to pull off neoprene ankle braces in a casual setting. Trust me on that one, bros.

However, because Kobe always gets the best technology, I’m sure these are going to feel great. It’ll probably be weird for all you healthy-ankled lucky ducks to get used to ankle braces, but they’re sure to add a little extra safety and support that turns a lot of people off from lowtops. Aesthetically, they look like a combination of the Kobe VI and the Air Max Hyperfly, which is quite a departure from last year’s snake-skinned model. This is just the launch colorway, and things will surely get fancier as the season (or whatever) goes on, but these are pretty tame. They are fine, but not super exciting.

Detailed photos after the jump, including a shot of the inner sleeve that looks like a blue duck. Let’s hear what you think in the comments.

(via Marquee Sole/Nice Kicks)

Comments (11)

  1. am i the only person who feels like nike will never make another shoe that looks better than the jordan 3′s?

  2. wow, free ankle braces

  3. In that last pic they look like ballet slippers.

  4. That’s a trip. In a really weird way, the insert concept kind of reminds me of these Scott ski boots that came out decades ago… they were super light weight and were called the Super Hot 2. The shells were bright orange and only had one buckle plus a strap that went around the top but they had inserts kind of like the new Kobe shoe – soles with ankle wrap-arounds. The boots were very flexible but painful as hell.

    Not related but if anybody wants to suffer through one more lockout post from Monday’s doomsnight (Searching for Slava).

    http://tinyurl.com/62wn6nr

  5. Good lord, those shoes are beautifully functional. I will own these.

  6. great looking shoe, though i would have preferred them keeping the snakeskin.

  7. rs” has spawned a torrent of lawsuits claiming that owners are stealing tips meant to be “pooled”Long before Weprin announced he was running for Anthony Weiner’s vacant congressional seat, he was helping out fellow first-year law student, David P

  8. got to get me one of thoes

  9. Glen Rice could have used those shoes. Remember the clunky ankle devices he used to wear? I’d be really interested in hearing how they feel… is the ankle support comfortable and functional?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *