August 24, 2011 BY John Kim
A lot’s changed for Kobe Bryant since he first came into the league at age 17. The ‘Black Mamba’ was drafted by the Charlotte Hornets (and immediately traded to the Lakers) in 1996, and before setting foot on an NBA court, he already had a sneaker endorsement with adidas – six years, almost $50 million. One of Kobe Bryant’s most notable and recognizable shoes of all-time is the adidas The Kobe, which featured a unique molded upper and boasted sleek and sexy lines inspired by the Audi TT Roadster. If anything, the adidas The Kobe is to Bryant as the Air Jordan VI is to Michael Jordan; Kobe Bryant, while wearing ‘The Kobe’, won his first NBA Championship, showing flashes of greatness with his 28-point performance in Game 3.
Although adidas and Kobe Bryant parted ways and we now associate Kobe Bryant with the Swoosh, the adidas Kobe signature line won’t ever be forgotten – primarily due to the eccentric design of The Kobe. Here we have a look at a rare, unreleased sample of that shoe, which features a unique shroud on the forefoot (the released version features a lacing structure that reaches further towards the toe). This sneaker is certainly an memoir from a completely different era for Kobe; he played second fiddle to Shaq, donned a different jersey number, and of course, represented a different brand on his feet, all of which gives you a clear picture on how much Kobe has progressed in his career. Continue reading for a look at this sample of the adidas The KOBE and check out the auction from poofyo101jumpmansneakers on eBay.