Basketball requires a lot of quick movement. You run, stop, change direction, jump – all in rapid succession. Your sneakers need to provide adequate foot support, ankle stability, shock absorption, and flexibility to withstand all these types of movements. They also need to have the right kind of tread that will prevent you from slipping on the court. You can’t just wear any type of sneaker without risking serious injury. That’s why your shoes are an integral piece of playing the game.
We looked at dozens of basketball sneakers in order to find the best, highest-quality, most comfortable, and highest performance shoes at any budget, based on factors such as durability, quality of materials, Amazon ratings, and other considerations. We narrowed our search down to five of the top-rated basketball shoes that are on the market today.
Meet the Adidas Performance Men’s Cloudfoam Basketball Sneaker, the best basketball shoes you can buy.
We’ve identified the Adidas Performance Men’s Cloudfoam Ilation Basketball Sneaker as the best basketball shoe overall. These sneakers feature a “cloudfoam” sockliner and midsole for the ultimate in lightweight cushioning. These features, coupled with the fact that they are a great value for the cost make them an excellent choice for savvy basketball players.
In This Article
- The 5 Top-Rated Basketball Shoes for 2018
- Our Top Pick: Adidas Performance Men's Cloudfoam Ilation Basketball Sneaker
- Our Runner Up: Nike Men's Air Max Audacity Basketball Shoe
- Our Budget Pick: Adidas Men's Mad Bounce Basketball Shoe
- Best High Top Basketball Shoes: Adidas Performance Men's Crazy Explosive Basketball Shoe
- Best Low Top Basketball Shoes: Adidas Men's D Lillard 3 Basketball Shoe
- Who Should Buy Basketball Sneakers
- Important Features to Consider
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Other Basketball Sneakers We Reviewed
The 5 Top-Rated Basketball Shoes for 2018
|Best Overall||Adidas Performance Men's Cloudfoam Ilation Mid Basketball Shoe||4.4|
|Runner Up||Nike Men's Air Max Audacity 2016 Basketball Shoe||4.4|
|Best Budget Buy||Adidas Men's Mad Bounce Basketball Shoe||4.5|
|Best High Top Basketball Shoes||Adidas Performance Men's Crazy Explosive Basketball Shoe||4.6|
|Best Low Top Basketball Shoes||Adidas Men's D Lillard 3 Basketball Shoe||4.4|
*Ratings are from Amazon at the time of publication and can change
Our Top Pick: Adidas Performance Men’s Cloudfoam Ilation Basketball Sneaker
If you’re looking for a basketball sneaker that features high performance at an affordable cost, look no further than the Adidas Performance Men’s Cloudfoam Basketball Sneaker. These high top basketball shoes come in eight fashion-forward colors, including white, black, and silver. They’re made of leather and fabric, with a rubber sole. They have an air mesh tongue, collar, and rear quarter for ventilation. They provide the ultimate in lightweight cushioning with a Cloudfoam sockliner and midsole.
Reviewers love the incredible value these shoes provide. They report that the shoes are extremely comfortable and long-lasting for a reasonable price. They also like the lightweight durability these shoes provide, even compared to shoes that are double the cost.
Reviewers also report that these shoes provide great ankle support, which is essential when playing basketball. You’ll never roll your ankle again with these shoes.
Adidas Performance Men’s Cloudfoam Basketball Sneaker Key Features:
- Come in eight fashion-forward colors
- Cloudfoam midsole for the ultimate in lightweight cushioning
- Made with leather with a rubber sole
- Feature the adidas three-stripe logo on the sides
- Comfortable and lightweight
Our Runner Up: Nike Men’s Air Max Audacity Basketball Shoe
Fashion-forward sneakers will keep you comfortable during your most vigorous play.
Another option is the Nike Men’s Air Max Basketball Shoe. These shoes feature Max Air cushioning that protects the heel on impact. They’re made with synthetic fabric with a rubber sole that provides great traction. The mid top rise offers a supportive feel, but aren’t as restrictive as high tops.
Reviewers love that these shoes provide lightweight support. They also have a cool, modern style and look that’s indicative of the Nike brand. They come in eight stylish colors, including white, black, grey and navy. They’re intended for both indoor and outdoor play.
Nike Men’s Air Max Basketball Shoe Key Features
- Come in eight bright colors
- Rubber sole
- Max Air cushioning
- Flywire cables provide support through the midfoot
Our Budget Pick: Adidas Men’s Mad Bounce Basketball Shoe
For basketball players who don’t want to sacrifice quality for price, the Adidas Men’s Basketball Shoe comes highly recommended.
Starting at just $23.95, the Adidas Men’s Mad Bounce Basketball Shoe are the best basketball sneakers for budget-friendly players who don’t want to sacrifice quality for price. These shoes come in six different colors. They features a high top rise. Reviewers report that the shoe provides great cushioning and support. You’re far less likely to ever roll an ankle or suffer a related injury with these shoes supporting you.
Reviewers love the value these shoes provide for the price. They also report that the shoes are lightweight and comfortable. While these shoes may not provide all the bells and whistles other brands may boast, they give you the everything you need from a pair of basketball shoes at a reasonable cost.
Adidas Men’s Mad Bounce Basketball Shoe Key Features:
- Synthetic sole and upper
- High top rise
- Comes in six colors
- Great support and cushioning
- Lightweight and comfortable
Best High Top Basketball Shoes: Adidas Performance Men’s Crazy Explosive Basketball Shoe
The Adidas Performance Men’s Crazy Explosive Basketball Shoe is the best high top basketball shoe on there.
If you’re looking for a knockout high top basketball shoe, look no further than the Adidas Performance Men’s Crazy Explosive Basketball Shoe. These high top shoes feature “energy-returning boost” cushioning that proposes: “The more energy you give, the more you get.” Reviewers love that this boost makes jumping more forgiving on the knees. They also report that it provides excellent support for your ankles and heels.
These shoes come in 11 fashion-forward colors that match almost any team jersey. The lacing system has been updated to reduce pressure on laces and eliminate breakage. The shoe is made with xeno upper and features tinted TPU wrap over the midsole.
Reviewers report that the shoe fits so well, it feels like you’re not wearing anything at all. They’re lightweight and provide excellent bounce that’s easy on the knees.
Adidas Performance Men’s Crazy Explosive Basketball Shoe Key Features:
- Comes in 11 colors
- “Energy-returning boost” cushioning is more responsive to your movements
- Updated lacing system
- Xeno upper
- TPU wrap over the midsole
Best Low Top Basketball Shoes: Adidas Men’s D Lillard 3 Basketball Shoe
The Adidas Men’s D Lillard 3 Basketball Shoe .
If you prefer a low top basketball shoe, turn to the Adidas Men’s D Lillard 3 Basketball Shoe. Not all basketball players like the heavy feel a high top shoe can provide. Instead, they like the flexibility of a low top. The Adidas men’s D Lillard 3 measures approximately 3.69 inches from the arch, providing the perfect low top option. This style comes in 29 amazing colors, including blue, red, purple, navy and more. It features a seamless fit and provides natural, flexible support. It also features four separate zones for lacing so you can add more stability or motion, depending on your preference.
Reviewers love that the shoe fits like a glove, feels light on the feet, and is extremely responsive. They also like how the lacing system allows them to dial in the exact fit they’re looking for. Reviewers remark that the shoe provides the best traction of any shoe they’ve tried. They also report that these shoes work just as great on indoor court as outdoors.
Adidas Men’s D Lillard 3 Basketball Shoe Key Features:
- Comes in 29 colors to match every style and preference
- Shaft measures approximately 3.69″ from arch
- Techfit engineered for fir and flexible support
- Padded collar for extra comfort
- Four lacing zones for added stability and motion
Who Should Buy Basketball Sneakers
If you play basketball, you need a pair of basketball sneakers to avoid injury. Basketball requires a lot of quick, intense movement, like running, stopping on a dime, shifting from side to side, and jumping. No other type of shoe is designed to support your feet and ankles during these kinds of movements like a basketball shoe. Running shoes are designed to be lightweight and support the foot during long distances. Choosing a running shoe to play basketball could lead to ankle injuries due to a lack of traction when stopping quickly and changing directions.
If you’re looking for a shoe for working out or running, you should, likewise, avoid purchasing a basketball sneaker. A heavy basketball shoe may cause fatigue and make it harder for you to run or perform your work out. It’s important to choose a shoe for the correct type of activity you plan to partake in. If you’re unsure, consult with your doctor or a sports medicine expert who can point you in the right direction.
Meet the Adidas Performance Men’s Cloudfoam Ilation Basketball Sneaker, the best basketball shoes you can buy.
Important Features to Consider
Basketball sneakers should be made with performance and comfort in mind. Here’s what to consider when selecting basketball shoes:
- Low, mid or high top? High top basketball sneakers feature a high upper that wraps around your ankle to provide support and stability. The downside of this extra coverage is that it often comes with extra weight that some players dislike. A mid top basketball sneaker provides a happy medium in terms of ankle support. The upper material provides some coverage, but also allow for increased flexibility. Low tops are great for speed and agility, but offer little in terms of ankle support.
- Midsole support. The midsole provides the cushion, usually comprised of EVA foam, polyurethane or a proprietary cushioning technology. Some shoes provide extra cushioning at certain pressure points that get stressed during a basketball game. Some also feature stiffer materials that protect against pronation (inward rolling).
- Traction. Basketball shoes feature an outer sole made of a rubber or synthetic material that provides traction on the court. Look for an outer sole that has a herringbone or hexagonal pattern. These are designed to prevent you from sliding on the court.
- Indoor or outdoor play? Most basketball shoes are designed to accommodate basketball play on an indoor court. If you plan on playing outdoors, look for a thicker, more durable outsole. Look for a shoe with deep, thick tread as asphalt is much less forgiving than an indoor hardwood court.
- Color and style. Style and aesthetics is also important. You’ll want shoes that are comfortable and lightweight, but look nice as well too. You may want to match your shoes with your team’s basketball jersey or just pick your favorite color so you stand out on the court. You can also show your appreciation for your favorite players by choosing a shoe that they have personally designed.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the use of basketball shoes?
Basketball shoes are specifically designed for playing basketball. They’re made to withstand and absorb the shock of intense and rapid movement. They provide ankle support, lightweight cushioning, and traction to help you succeed at the game of basketball and reduce injury.
What is the difference between running and basketball shoes?
Running shoes are lightweight and designed to endure long distances. They cushion your feet from the repetitive motion of running. Basketball sneakers are more bulky and heavier to provide more support to the ankle and cushioning for the foot during a basketball game. Running long distances in basketball shoes can cause fatigue and soreness, while playing basketball in running shoes could lead to a turned ankle due to lack of ankle support.
Are basketball shoes good for working out?
Basketball shoes are best for playing basketball. Other forms of working out, like weight lifting, running, hiking, or bike riding all require different types of shoes. Using the wrong type of shoes for an injury can lead to soreness and injury, so it’s best to choose the best type of shoe intended for each activity.
Is it good to run in basketball shoes?
Of course, you will be running up and down the court in your basketball shoes. However, you shouldn’t make a habit to run long distances in basketball shoes. Basketball shoes are heavier and bulkier than typical minimalist running shoes that are designed to be as lightweight as possible. Running in basketball shoes will slow down your stride, impact your form, and can even cause fatigue.
Other Basketball Sneakers We Reviewed
Meet the Adidas Performance Men’s Cloudfoam Basketball Shoe, the best basketball shoes you can buy.
We looked at 20 other basketball shoes. Even though they didn’t make our 5 best basketball shoe list, they’re the best of the rest and each is still a great option. The information you’ll need to compare each one is included with the listing.
Low Top Basketball Shoes
The NIKE Men’s Air Versitile Nubuck features integrated webbing for lightweight containment with an Air-Sole that cushions the heel. The durable outsole is designed to play on a variety of indoor and outdoor surfaces.
- Comes in 8 colors
- Shaft measures three inches from arch
- Air-sole unit for cushioing
Mid Top Basketball Shoes
The Champion Men’s shoe is an affordable option that features a sporty upper design and a breathable padded insole. It also features a skid-resistant outsole for traction.
- Mesh lining for breathability
- Non-marking skid-resistant outer sole
- Synthetic materials
The Adidas Men’s Cf Ignition features Cloudfoam cushioning that protects your feet during the game. It features street-tech style and a rubber sole for traction.
- Comes in six fashionable colors
- Cloudfoam cushioning
- Rubber sole
The NIKE Men’s Air Versitile Ii features premium textile material with a modified herringbone pattern for traction. It also features a visible air-sole heel that provides cushioning for high impact.
- Air-sole heel unit provides lightweight cushioning
- Rubber outsole with herringbone pattern
- Flywire cables provide stability
Cost: $48.49 – $150.00
The Under Armour Men’s Drive 4 features a full-length bootie for greater structure and support. It also has an external heel counter to keep your heel in place.
- Comes in seven colors
- Toe wrap for flexibility
- Full-length bootie
Cost: $57.99 – $217.00
The NIKE Men’s Air Versitile features webbing integrated with the laces for ultimate containment. The durable outsole plays on a variety of surfaces, including outdoors.
- Ari-sole unit provides a cushion for hard landings
- Comes in a stylish cool grey color
- Firm and supportive
Cost: $62.95 – $99.99
The Under Armour Men’s Jen features die-cut EVA sockliner for the ultimate cushioning. It also has a rubber sole with a durable herringbone pattern for traction.
- Available in five bright colors
- Enhanced cushioning around ankle collar for comfort
- Ventilated mesh panel for breathability
Cost: $56.24 – $135.00
With a durable herringbone pattern outsole and zoned support, the Nike Kyrie 3 provide the ultimate in comfort and style. It also features the Nike Zoom unit, thin, lightweight, and durable cushioning.
- Available in 21 colors
- Advanced herringbone traction
- Nike Zoom unit at the forefoot
Cost: $70.89 – $269.99
A bounce midsole provides cushioning, while TPU overlays provide strategic stability in the Adidas Performance Crazy Bounce shoe. It also features a durable herringbone pattern for traction.
- Comes in ten bright colors
- Rubber outsole provides excellent grip
- TPU panel provides support
Cost: $32.61 – $142.95
The NIKE Men’s Hyderdunk features next-generation Nike React cushioning. This cushion is a foam technology that provides a superior blend of comfort and energy-returning responsiveness.
- Mid-top provides ankle support
- Pressure-mapped outsole tread enhances traction
- Shaft measures 3.25 inches from arch
Cost: $63.75 – $458.35
This mid-top basketball shoe features a bunch of technologic features, including a natural biochemical fit within the toe box that allows you to spread your toes, Kinetic Lift Technology in the midsole, and explosion TFOAM foam in the forefoot.
- Midsole features lockdown wings for added support
- LMT outsole flex channel increases speed
- Padded collar and tongue for extra comfort
The Adidas Men’s Cf Refresh features a street-smart style with all the features you need in a basketball sneaker. They have Cloudfoam cushioning and a supportive mid-top shaft.
- Cloudfoam cushioning
- adidas logo on side
- Rubber sole
Cost: $38.95 – $145.74
The Adidas Explosive Flash features a mid top shaft for middle-of-the-road stability. It also has a synthetic sole with a herringbone pattern for traction.
- Mid top shaft
- Synthetic sole with herringbone pattern
- Comes in red and grey
Cost: $27.94 – $129.29
With a synthetic upper and molded quarter panels, the Under Armour Men’s Jet provides breathable, flexible support. Engineered perforations and a mesh tongue increase ventilation.
- Available in 16 colors
- Ruber sole with durable traction
- Mid top
High Top Basketball Shoes
The Adidas Men’s Rise up 2 features a high-top shaft for the ultimate support. It comes in five fashion-forward colors.
- Comes in five colors
- Textile and synthetic materials with a rubber sole
- Comfortable and supportive
The Fires Men’s basketball shoes come in 28 amazing fashion-forward colors. These shoes are designed to provide players with the ultimate in protection, comfort, and speed.
- Comes in 28 fashion-forward colors
- Lightweight and flexible midsole
- Provides protection, comfort, and speed
The Under Armour Men’s Curry 3 comes in 28 bold and fashionable colors. They’re comfortable, lightweight, and provide stable ankle support.
- Comes in 28 fashionable colors
- Shaft measures 4.5 inches from arch
- Rubber sole with tread
Cost: $53.22 – $405.50
With a breathable and lightweight upper and a full-length bootie construction, the Under Armour Team Drive 4 provide a blend of function and comfort. It also features an external heel counter for improved stability.
- Available in 11 bold colors
- Durable, reinforced lace loops
- Toe wrap improves toe flexibility
Cost: $56.26 – $198.60
The Nike Zoom Devosion High Tops effortlessly blend function and style. They’re available in 13 color-blocking patterns that are sure to fit any personal style.
- Available in 13 fashion-forward colors
- Rubber sole with durable herringbone pattern
- Shaft measures 4.5 from the arch
Cost: $45.00 – $153.00
The Nike Lebron Soldier 10 features a 3-layer upper featuring stretch lining, a 3-strap lockdown system, and a Zoom Air cushioning unit at the forefront and heel. It’s available in 26 colors.
- 3-strap lockdown system
- Forefront Zoom Air unit
- Rubber outsole with multi-directional pattern for long-lasting traction
Cost: $92.33 – $299.99