Basketball in recent years has become a position-less game. Centers like Nikola Jokic are passing and dribbling the rock, similar to how guards like Chris Paul have done it for years. We see point guard-sized players like Ja Morant posterizing big men and scoring more than they facilitate, and even 6’6″ centers like Grant Williams or PJ Tucker that are tremendously effective on defense and spacing the floor on offense. So finding the best basketball shoes by position can be harder than it seems. Size and playing style are still factors on the court, and therefore elements to consider when choosing the best basketball shoe for your “position”.
Signature basketball shoes are of course designed to cater to the player and playing style of the signature athlete, so it should be as easy as grabbing the signature model of a player that plays your same position, right? Well, not really. There are Kyrie models that are better suited for shooting guards, even though Kyrie is a point guard, and non of Giannis Antentokoumpo’s shoes seemed to be designed for a power forward.
If you have a particular playing style, you will need a particular type of shoe that can keep up with your game. If you play more like a point guard you are probably quicker and shiftier and your job is to set up the offense and ensure everyone is in the right place at the right time. If you are more of a shooting guard style player you can score and shoot, and you need to spot up and change directions in a hurry, and we see three-and-D players more often now.
Small forwards are likely two-way players and can mostly do a little bit of everything from offense to defense. Power forwards give that scoring threat from the post and help box out on rebounds. Centers anchor the defense and ensure that nobody gets in the paint uncontested.
If you’re looking for the best basketball shoe for a particular position, you are in the right place. We test hundreds of pairs each year that fit various positions and playing styles to find the best basketball shoes overall. So, with all this being said, let’s get to all the best basketball shoes by position that are currently available.
You can also check out our full lists of the best basketball shoes for point guards, the best basketball shoes for shooting guards, the best basketball shoes for small forwards, the best basketball shoes for power forwards, and the best basketball shoes for centers if you want to see more choices.
Last update 09.25.2023
Best Basketball Shoes By Position Show
Best Basketball Shoes By Position 2023
Best Basketball Shoes For Point Guards
Nike Sabrina 1
The Nike Sabrina 1 is a great first signature shoe for Sabrina Ionescu and is one of the best basketball shoes Nike has to offer in 2023/24. The Sabrina 1 is a top-notch guard-style shoe that will give you great traction (indoors), a speedy and reactive cushioning setup, along with elite lockdown and support. If you’re looking for a basketball shoe with beefy and plush cushioning, this might not be the shoe for you, but that is hardly a drawback. Read the full review. Price: $130
Best Basketball Shoes for Shooting Guards
Nike GT Hustle 2
The Nike GT Hustle 2 is the successor to, and an enormous improvement on the Nike GT Run and might just be one of the better performance models we see this year. It is also somewhat of a niche performance model. The very low-profile cushioning system (which features a full-length Zoom Air strobel), the minimal support features, and the traction could make the Nike GT Hustle 2 one of the best guard shoes of the year. Read the full review. Price: $170
Best Basketball Shoes for Small Forwards
Nike KD 15
The Nike KD 15 is an excellent performance model and another great shoe within the KD signature line. The Nike KD 14 could actually be featured in this top slot, but since it is last season’s model, we went with the 15. The KD 14 was already a pretty flawless performance model, and the KD 15 improves upon it.
The cushioning system is the shoe’s best feature. Cushlon is the primary foam carrier, on top of which sits the full-length Nike Zoom Air Strobel unit to provide impact protection under your feet. The shoe also features excellent traction that’s reminiscent of the pattern featured on the Kobe 9, which offered some of the best traction of all time. This shoe is tremendously well-rounded and has everything a dynamic small forward would want. See the full review. Price: $150
Check out our Full list of the best basketball shoes for small forwards here.
Best Basketball Shoes for Power Forwards
Nike LeBron 20
The Nike LeBron 20 is one of the most hyped LeBron James basketball shoes. It strays away from previous releases like the Nike LeBron 19, even in the traction department. That shoe’s grip was inconsistent, but this one’s a beast. The midsole is full-length Cushlon with a forefoot Zoom Turbo unit and an additional standard heel Zoom Air unit in the heel. For bigger forwards, this is the dream. You can combine nimbleness for intricate footwork and tons of impact protection. The upper is lightweight and comfortable as well. Read the full review. Price: $200
Best Basketball Shoes for Centers
Nike GT Jump 2
It’s nice to see the changes Nike made in this shoe. They have taken everything that was great in the first model and tweaked it to make the GT Jump 2 that much better as a performance basketball shoe. But this shoe is still one of the best-cushioned shoes we have ever seen, which, combined with the upgraded materials and fit make it the best basketball shoe for centers you can pick up right now. Read the full review.