NIKE KOBE AD MID REVIEW – Same Name, Different Performance

Here we go again… The latest Nike Kobe AD MID is finally ready for the performance review after a few beastly weeks of testing them out.

My first reaction when I saw them for a first time was like… What? These look like 2K Generics, man. Buut they kind of grew on me after a while and now I‘m thinking that this year‘s Kobe AD is probably one of the best, if not the best looking Kobe model of all time.

However, we‘re here not for esthetics or looks. We’re here for the performance. So let’s see if the Kobe AD Mid got something for us.

Let’s get it!



WEIGHT: 341 g. / 12.03 oz












The Kobe AD Mid features the Felt material with some synthetic leather details along the upper. And this isn’t something that you see on a basketball sneaker on a regular basis. Especially, when we’re living in the knitted upper era right now. So it‘s really interesting choice by Nike and maybe by Kobe itself.

Straight out of the box, the upper does feel stiff & clumsy. But after a quite short break-in period, it did become softer and more forgiven.

Though, it has never got to the point where the upper literally becomes as your foot’s extension, offering you that amazing one-to-one fit. More times than not, my foot was forced to adapt to the tooling rather than the opposite way. On a budget model I kind of see that happening, yet, this is definitely not what you would expect from a signature line with respective price tag on it.



Same tooling – completely different results. We have a full-length Lunarlon midsole with a HUGE ZOOM Air unit in the heel area for that nice bouncy kick. This time it works and it works flawlessly, I‘m telling you. Oh man does it feel good. Still, BOOST is life.

The Lunarlon midsole itself does offer a solid amount of impact protection, while still maintaining that famous responsive ride. Also, the ZOOM Air unit in the back nicely complements this whole setup by providing your foot with super plushy feel.

Although, you will be giving up some of the court feel in these since the AD Mid doesn‘t feature a drop in midsole unlike the previous Kobe line sneakers. But it shouldn‘t be a turnoff for those who prefer being lower to the ground due to the fact that the Lunarlon midsole will bottom up at some point. So don‘t worry about that.



On clean/semi clean courts the super compact engineered tread pattern is going to be BEASTLY. You ain‘t gonna nowhere with them. Straight up glue, man.

Now, on those dirty ass courts you will be forced to wipe the outsoles on every single dead ball if you want to maintain that beastly grip with the floor. It gets annoying sometimes, but that‘s the way it is with those dense patterns.

If you‘re searching for a solid outdoors performer, just be kind and skip pass this model. Seriously, the outsole features extremely soft rubber, so playing them outdoors would be deadly.



Like most of the Kobe models, the AD Mid does fit narrow in the midfoot. So going ½ a size up would be a great idea, unless, you have a KD like narrow foot. If that‘s the case, stay with your true size.

Due to this upper the shoe feels like back from the ‘90s – firm & supportive fit without too much emphasizing comfort. As the flywire cables bring in a modern breeze to the shoe and, of course, do improve the overall foot containment.

So everything sounds pretty solid (in the true sense of the word), right? Yes, until I star speaking about breathability… There‘s zero breathability. ZERO. NADA. NONE. I‘m not very picky when it comes to breathability, but this time it was pretty bad. Freaking true OG’s.



Now this is the department where the Felt upper shows up at its best – strong lateral foot containment, no heel slippage. You just lace them up and that‘s it, your foot is going nowhere no matter what.

On top of that, there‘s a midfoot shank and a beastly outrigger for complete stability while making fast moves or fighting for a ball in post.

Oh, more one thing. Since the tongue is fairly thin, the first two lace lines from the top were digging in to my foot at first. But as I mentioned, after a short break-in time, everything was A1.



First of all, I love the fact that every single colorway has that unique look, a different meaning and different story behind it. I mean, these small details make you to feel that you‘re owning more than a simple sneaker, it makes you feel like you‘re having a small friction of Kobe‘s history.

Obviously, the performance didn‘t let me down either – killer support, outstanding stability, well-balanced cushioning for any type of player, supportive but at the same time comfortable upper with the spirit of the ‘90s and that beastly traction go with. Pretty nice, doesn‘t it?

Yes, the Kobe AD Mid has a few flaws here & there. So while it isn‘t a perfect performer or a TOP 5 hoop shoe of 2017. They definitely has a huge potential to be somewhere in the TOP 10, which in my opinion, it‘s a pretty darn good result.






Hope you enjoyed my Performance Review on the NIKE KOBE AD MID . Will you be picking them up? If so, which colorway? Let me know!

If you have any questions don’t hesitate to comment down below!


4 thoughts on “NIKE KOBE AD MID REVIEW – Same Name, Different Performance

  • October 15, 2017 at 8:08 am


    Can you please tell me if those Kobe has removable insoles ? I need to wear my own insoles.


    • October 16, 2017 at 8:45 am

      Hey man,

      The insoles are lightly glued but if you need to change them up, you can easily do that without damaging your shoe. Just put some force removing it and make sure you do that before wearing them even once.

  • April 8, 2018 at 7:53 am

    Do you know what the symbols on the heels mean?

    • April 8, 2018 at 7:59 pm

      This is the “OPTIMISM” colorway and according to Nike – “The Kobe A.D. ‘Optimism’ honors the element of the Mamba Mentality that inspires an unconditional self-belief and a positive outlook, no matter how big of a challenge, or how unlikely the odds.”


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