Basketball shoes are a must for anyone who plays basketball, no matter your skill level or frequency of play. Basketball shoes give not only a superior performance based around basketball-specific movements, but they also work to protect your body from basketball-related stress and strain. One of the most popular basketball shoe designs is the high top. The high-top design has been around since Converse Allstars originated it in 1917; this shoe type has seen two World Wars, and it’s still going strong a hundred years after its original inception. It’s no wonder why high top basketball shoes are the go-to basketball shoe type for professional players and shoe enthusiasts alike.
Best High Top Basketball Shoe
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Nike Men’s Zoom Without A Doubt
The lace-up closure supplies support as well as a better fit. Also, the laces are sturdy, so you don’t feel like they’re going to snap on you anytime soon. The collar of the high top is padded for better comfort and support, both of which protect your ankles while playing.
The midfoot cage keeps your foot secured and locked down; it’s made with breathable mesh for extra comfort. The soles are rubber with a varied polygonal tread mixed with zigzags; the reason for tread variation is so that each part of your foot is properly supported by the right level of traction for different moves that put pressure on different parts of the foot.
The padded collar is very comfortable and I’m a big fan of the traction these shoes give. Moreover, they feel very durable, like I’m going to get a lot of wear out of them. So far, I’ve been wearing them awhile and no issues on that front.
It’d be nicer if there was more support at the back of the ankle. I get the fact that lowering the back of the ankle area is supposed to allow for more movement, but it’d be more comfortable if it was a bit higher.
Under Armour Men’s Lockdown
The collar has foam inside to better support and comfort your ankles during wear. One of the main complaints about high tops is the ankle area, so if you have sensitive ankles, this might be a good option for you. The sockliner is full-length and made of molded ethyl vinyl acetate (EVA) foam, which conforms to your foot, providing a superior level of comfort compared to sockliners made of less forgiving materials like leather.
The midsole is also full-length EVA foam; the midsole is located between the outsole and the upper part of the shoe, and provides comfort when sprinting. The solid rubber outsole utilizes a herringbone tread (or traction) pattern; this is a great traction type if you do a lot of linear and lateral movements, which are common in basketball.
I like the use of EVA. It just makes everything that much more comfortable. The herringbone tread is also great for indoor use; for those two benefits alone, these are definitely some of the best high top basketball shoes on the market.
While many basketball shoes run on the small or narrow side, these actually run a bit big, which can be frustrating if you’re already annoyed by erratic basketball shoe sizing in general. But because of the larger fit, you could definitely say these would be some of the best high top basketball shoes for someone with wide feet.
Nike’s innovative Hyperfuse material technology keeps your feet nice, cool and comfortable all while being more durable and performance-driven. It works by hot-melting three layers together—a synthetic base, foam core and Thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) film overlay—to create a super-material that outperforms the rest on looks, comfort and flexible strength. Some of the best high top basketball shoes on the market today use Hyperfuse for that reason. Flywire filaments work like cables to add extra support and structure to Nike basketball shoes. Flywire is seamlessly embedded in the shoe uppers and you can certainly feel the difference.
Zoom Air cushioning pads are located at the forefoot and heel of the Nike Hyperdunk 2015’s. Zoom Air is a type of padding that is extremely thin so you get great court feel; meanwhile, it’s made out of a high memory fabric, which goes back to its original shape. This further enhances the feel of the court under your feet as well as provides you with more comfort and better stability during quick cuts and other fast-paced movements that you only find in basketball.
The collar on the Hyperdunk 2015’s is padded for extra support. As always, it’s important for the collar of a high-top basketball shoe to be comfortable; if it’s not comfortable, it’ll ruin the rest of the shoe for you, but that’s just not a problem with the Hyperdunk 2015’s. The Zoom Air cushioning pads work with the wrap around outsole to provide the ultimate in on-court stability so you’re always sure-footed and don’t miss your shot.
The Zoom Air pads make it feel like you’re walking on actual air. I like to look for comfort first and foremost, even though I’m a fan of aesthetics as well, and the Hyperdunk 2015’s are some of the most comfortable high top basketball shoes I’ve ever worn in my life, period. The padded collar is perfect for outdoor basketball shoes and only adds to that comfort level, because detail to collar is often sadly neglected in even some of the better-known brands out there. They’re very sturdy and supportive, too, which is nice. As for aesthetics, these shoes are dope. It’s like they modernized a classic high top basketball shoe which, to me, is the way to go instead of trying to “reimagine” a high top, as others have done.
Like most basketball shoes in general, which run small on the whole, it can be difficult to find the size that works for you—especially if you have wide feet. But if you plan ahead or have another pair of Nikes to compare them to, that should help in the process.
AND1 Men’s Fantom
The rubber soles on the AND1 Fantoms feature mixture of herringbone and polygonal treads to create a great combination of traction for different types of movements. The shoes are ventilated with laser-cut holes to keep your feet cool and comfortable.
The midsole is made of EVA foam (ethyl vinyl acetate), which reduces and redistributes impact, works great for sprinting and is so lightweight it doesn’t negate other performance aspects in the process. The lace lock is a sturdy hexagonal force to be reckoned with, keeping your laces locked down tight for superior fit and feel.
The Fantoms are a great looking shoe with heavy attention to ventilation as well as movement. The well-thought out tread pattern combined with the EVA midsole makes movement easy and comfortable. Overall, one of the best high top basketball shoes out there when it comes to tread and movement.
Once again, like so many other basketball shoe brands, this shoe runs small, so plan accordingly.
Adidas Men’s Dual Threat BB
The iced rubber outsole features a unique wavy patterned tread broken by straight horizontal lines which provides surprisingly good traction for such an unorthodox pattern. The upper part of the shoe is made of engineered mesh; this allows for optimal breathability and comfort during play while keeping the shoes lightweight, which reduces fatigue.
ADIPRENE+ midsole provides great cushioning support and gives impact energy back to you to propel you forward in your game. The TECHFIT SPEEDWRAP on the adidas Dual Threat basketball shoes optimized lockdown support.
The main thing to like about the adidas Dual Threats is how lightweight they are. I would say these are the best high top basketball shoes in terms of lightness alone. The ADIPRENE midsole combined with the intelligently engineered mesh uppers back that notion up. Also, I’m a fan of the from the lockdown to the iced rubber outsole.
The downside of these is that they’re stiffer than you might think. Maybe they just take a longer time to break in; either way, it’s something to keep in mind.
Some of the best high top basketball shoes of today made this list, but there can only be one winner of the roundup and that’s the Nike Hyperdunk 2015 Men’s Basketball Shoe. It is above and beyond the rest in so many ways. The Hyperfuse uppers are extremely comfortable and worthy of their hype, as is the Zoom Air cushioning pads which take so much strain of your joints and shins. The comfort alone is amazing, but they also function really well. They’re stable with great traction. Also, they look plain cool. This bevy of quality features is why the Nike Hyperdunk 2015 Men’s Basketball Shoe easily wins this roundup.