Best Basketball Shoes For 2023: Top 5 Hoops Sneakers Most Recommended By Experts

There’s good reason that basketball is one of the most popular sports for Americans of all ages to play. Basketball requires very little equipment (or gear) to get started, other than a ball, hoop, and the best pair of shoes to support you and your game!

And there’s good reason to get invested in basketball, especially at a young age. In addition to the cardiovascular benefits, one recent study shows the sports is beneficial for building stronger bones in children!

Invented in 1891 by Dr. James Naismith, basketball has come a long way. The story is much the same with basketball shoes, which now feature advanced technology and benefits throughout the entire shoe. These advancements in basketball shoes have been designed to both minimize the risk of injuries and enhance the mobility for those playing.

According to the American Academy of Podiatric Sports Medicine, a proper shoe is one of the most important means of preventing injuries among athletes. Proper shoes should provide lots of ankle support and shock absorption.  Sports Medicine Weekly agrees, adding that a great pair of basketball shoes should be comfortable, durable, and provide traction for your feet. Ultimately, these additions provide supports for your ankle and knees.

All that said, whether you’re playing for the first time, a street ball legend, or a veteran of the sport, your shoes are an incredibly important part of your game! StudyFinds is here to help you find the best basketball shoes, at least according to the pros. For our report, we visited 10 expert websites to see which kicks were most frequently recommended across these sites.

The List: Best Sneakers, According to the Experts

1. Nike LeBron XX (20)

The Nike LeBron XX (also known as the LeBron 20) debuted just months ago and according to Sports Keeda, “has already become one of the most beloved shoe models.”  It was no surprise that the LeBron XX was at the top of our list of expert recommended basketball shows.

The low cut shoe, named after one of the greatest basketball players of all-time (and no, this is not a debate of MJ vs. LeBron!), was noted for its comfort for people with any size foot.  The XX feature a “flexible, lightweight, and breathable knitted fabric, giving your feet more space to sit comfortably,” said RealSport101.

No detail was too small for the LeBron XX, with Weartesters mentioning that the shoe’s grip was a “beast.” The aforementioned low cut, in combination with carbon fiber shanks in the midfoot, and additional heel support allow greater flexibility and explosive movements for basketball players of any age.

2. Nike KD 15

The Nike KD 15, named after current Brooklyn Nets Superstar Kevin Durant, were also highly recommended by the experts. The KD 15, unlike previous KD models, was also a low cut shoe.

This shoe was consistently praised for the technology upgrade within the shoes.  These upgrades include “a full-length Zoom Air Strobel unit and a Cushlon foam midsole for enhanced cushioning while playing” according to Complex.  The full-length Zoom Air Strobel were consistently mentioned in reviews, with Weartesters commenting that the Air Strobel “feels like springs under your feet.”

The KD 15, much like the LeBron XX, was also praised for its comfort. DesignScene notes that the cushioning within the KD 15 feels “responsiveness, bounciness, and impact protection in a special unique way. The fabrics are comfortable to play in and properly adapt to your feet.”

3. Jordan 36

The Jordan 36, which are named after Hall of Famer Michael Jordan (no, we’re STILL not debating MJ vs. LeBron) were also highly regarded by the experts.

The Jordan 36s received high praise for the “cutting-edge technologies” they provided, according to DesignScene. Much like the KD 15s, the Jordan 36s are equipped with the full-length Zoom Air Strobel within the midsole that is supplemented by a Zoom Air unit extending from the forefoot.

But the Jordan 36s don’t stop there. In addition to the Air Strobel, they feature a phylon midsole, eclipse plate, and leno jacquard weave. All of these additional features provide an incredible level of cushioning, traction, and superior fit.  HighSnobiety firmly agrees, saying that the jacquard weave “offers a lightweight yet durable ride.”

The Jordan 36 was a clear top choice by the experts, with WearTesters calling is “one of the best performance models of the year”

4. Under Armour Curry Flow 8

Coming up next in the list of top basketball shoes are the Curry Flow 8’s, named after Golden State Warriors guard Steph Curry.

The Curry Flow 8s are much different than the prior shoes for one main reason – they contain zero rubber.  Don’t let that discourage you, HighSnobiety notes that “Curry Flow 8 promises the best ride yet with a fully rubberless build that goes big on cushioning for a zippy, fast-reaction game”

Fast reaction is a critical element of Steph Curry’s game, so it’s no shock that quick movement and flexibility was a necessity from the shoes. RunRepeat did not hold back in their praise “If you want a basketball shoe that will help you feel surefooted when stepping on a banana peel, this is it!”

The Flow 8s were noted for their comfort, cushioning, and support they offer your feet and ankles in side-to-side movements. These shoes, unlike others, were also recommended for outdoor usage for those who might prefer to hoop at the local park.  If you’re looking for “all-around comfortable, versatile basketball shoe that will serve you well whether you play indoors or outdoors,” as Active mentions, then this is the shoe for you!

5. Kyrie 7

The Kyrie 7s, named after Brooklyn Nets guard Kyrie Irving, round out the top 5 list. Much like the other shoes within the top 5, the Kyrie 7s were highly rated for their design, cushion, comfort, and flexibility.

Starting with the design, Highsnobiety finds that the Nike Kyrie 7 “boasts a typically bold set of colorways with subtle personal detailing throughout.”

But looks are only a small part of the equation for what makes the Kyrie 7’s a great shoe.  The Kyrie 7s feature a 360-degree traction pattern, extra cushion support, and an Air Zoom Turbo Unit.  Dunk or Three writes about the Kyrie 7’s “Not only does it have a strong zoom unit that runs throughout the entire model, but the padded collar gives extra support to your Achilles tendon.

Your achilles isn’t the only thing that would be protected by the Kyrie 7s, according to experts. “We can highly recommend it for the nimble players who perform plenty of side-to-side movements and appreciate that extra ankle support,” says RunRepeat.


Note: This article was not paid for nor sponsored. StudyFinds is not connected to nor partnered with any of the brands mentioned and receives no compensation for its recommendations.

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