Tracing the origins of Kobe Bryant's monumental impact on basketball footwear, enthusiasts and historians are drawn back to a pivotal chapter: his alliance with the German sportswear behemoth Adidas.
In early 1996, a young Kobe inked a deal with adidas, a partnership that promised to thrust him into the limelight, a contrast to the potential shadow he might have occupied at industry rivals like Nike or Reebok. He leaped into the fabric of Adidas promotional endeavors, becoming the face of the 'Feet You Wear' campaigns within mere months of joining team adidas. The fruits of this collaboration were soon manifested in tangible form, one of the most notable being the adidas KB8. This sneaker has found its place in the annals of basketball footwear history.
In what was to become his official welcome to the league, these very shoes graced Kobe's feet during a milestone in his burgeoning career: his first-ever 30-point game on December 14th, 1997, against the Dallas Mavericks. While this game heralded the advent of Kobe as a scoring maestro, it also marked the ascension of his signature sneakers into coveted collectibles.
In homage to that legacy, the adidas Crazy 8—once known as the KB8—has resurfaced. Currently causing a stir in select Asian markets, this piece of basketball royalty is poised to land on Finish Line US on November 25.