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10+ Best Traction Basketball Shoes 2024. Expert-tested and Reviewed.

BEST TRACTION BASKETBALL SHOES A

Traction is the foundation of all basketball shoes. You can have great cushioning. You can have quality materials. You can even have all the support features ever known to footwear. But without a proper outsole grip, all of those are meaningless. You’ll be slipping and sliding all over the place, unable to do anything properly. That’s why we felt it essential to make our list of the Best Traction Basketball Shoes.

To some people, this aspect of a basketball performance shoe is the most important. Understandably so. We hope you’ll find the shoe with the proper traction for you and your needs on court. You can always also check out our list of the best overall basketball shoes as well. Now, here are the Best Traction Basketball Shoes.

Last updated 07.09.2024

Best Traction Basketball Shoes 2024 Overall

Serious Player Only Player 1 Plus

The Player 1 was already a great hoop shoe and the Player 1 Plus takes things to another level. Everything has been refined and improved slightly in this version of the shoe: more versatile traction, better materials, better fit, … it’s just a better performance basketball shoe. The biggest drawback of the Player 1 Plus is the price. $180 is, admittedly, steep. But you are getting a ton of bang for your buck and really excellent traction. Read full review. Price: $180

8.5/10
Total Score
Buy SPO Player 1 Plus

Nike LeBron 21

The Nike LeBron 21 promises to be a beast on court. It can be described as a remix of the Nike LeBron 20, and, that shoe was amazing, and in fact the best basketball shoe from last year. Barring any unfortunate surprises, this will be one of the top models this year, one of the most versatile, and one of the most comfortable on court, as well as an attainable Kobe substitute. It also features practically the same traction set up as the LeBron 20, which was one of the best-tractioned basketball shoes of last year. Read the full review. Price: $200

9/10
Total Score
#nike_FQ4052-400

adidas DON Issue 6

The DON Issue 6 is the brand’s light, speedy guard shoe, an excellent example of this shoe style. With the DON Issue 6 you’ll be getting top tier traction, a springy and agile cushioning system, and top-notch support features all packed into a light and breezy package. On top of that, the shoe retails for a very reasonable $120. Now, it’s not a good option for outdoor play and heavier hoopers, or those with a more powerful playing style might prefer a more substantial shoe with a more plush cushioning system. Still, the DON Issue 6 is a great, guard-orientated performance basketball shoe. Read the full review. Price $120.

8/10
Total Score
Buy adidas Don Issue 6

Serious Player Only Game 1

The Game 1 is another solid hoop shoe from Serious Player Only and it does exactly what the brand wanted it to do: be more versatile than the Player 1. The Player 1 and the Player 1 Plus are great guard-orientated basketball shoes. The Game 1 on the other hand is a basketball shoe that more playing styles and body types will enjoy on court.

The more robust support features, the added cushioning, the updated fit, and improved lacing system make the Game 1 a shoe more types of players will enjoy. On top of that, they’re less expensive than the Player 1 and can be equipped with any of the drop-in midsoles SPO has to offer. Read full review. Price: $138

8.5/10
Total Score
Buy SPO Game 1
EQLZ 247 Performance Review
Watch the full review

EQLZ 247

The EQLZ 247 is an excellent, well-rounded, high-performing basketball shoe, which is made all the more impressive since this shoe is coming to us from a practically unknown brand. The EQLZ 247’s innovative anatomical traction system, which, visually, is reminiscent of the Kobe 9’s traction setup, grips the court like no one’s business. It isn’t the most durable setup and is not well prepared for outdoor use, but indoors the 247s traction is elite. Read the full review. Price: $150

9/10
Total Score
Buy EQLZ 247

Nike KD 17

To keep things short and sweet, the Nike KD 17 is basically the same shoe as the Nike KD 16. If you like that shoe, you’re going to enjoy this one. The Nike KD 17 is a top-tier and super versatile performance basketball shoe that will work well for almost every playing style and position on the floor. The KD 17 also gets extra points for being a “better than average” outdoor option, especially if you can find an XDR version. Read the full review.

9/10
Total Score
#nike_FJ9487-700

Way of Wade 10

Again, Way of Wade shoes in general are great for wide-footers because of their wider last. The Way of Wade 10 is lightweight and offers great cushion, provided by a dual-density foam setup: Cloud Foam and Pebax. It feels like Zoom Air took steroids and was put under your feet. Simply put, this is one heck of a shoe to play in. If you’re a fan of DWade or want to try non-mainstream shoes, this sneaker is for you. The upper is light and breathable, and they fit true to size. A bit pricey but worth it. Read full review.

Price: $199- $240

9/10
Total Score
Buy Way of Wade 10

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

8.5/10
Total Score
Buy Nike Sabrina 1

Puma Stewie 3

The Puma Stewie 3 is an elevated and improved Kobe 11. It’s more flexible, wider, lower to the ground, with better torsional support and more durable cushioning…so if you like the Kobe 11 or you’re looking for an affordable Kobe substitute, the Puma Stewie 3 should be at the top of your list.

With this shoe, you’ll get top-notch traction, a smooth and reactive ride on court, and elite lockdown and containment. And you get all of that for the very reasonable price of $120. It’s more of a guard shoe, and if you need above-average cushioning, this might not the shoe for you. But all around, the Stewie 3 is a great performance model and a worthy 3rd model in Brianna Stewart’s signature line. Read the full review. Price: $130

9/10
Total Score
Buy Puma Stewie 3

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

8/10
Total Score
#nike_HF1570-001

Jordan Luka 3

Overall, the Jordan Luka 3 is a rather disappointing model. Performance should be fine, but feels lackluster if you take into account the $130 price tag. The lack of innovation is also a bummer, both in terms of tech and all-around aesthetics. Admittedly, traction and support are standout features, and cater well to shifter players on the court, and the cushioning setup will provide a comfortable, zippy, and smooth ride, which will work well for most playing styles. However, the materials used feel very cheap for the price, and the fit can be uncomfortably tight. Honestly, we expected more from the 3rd signature shoe of a player of the caliber of Luka DoncicThe Jordan Luka 3 sneaker is a solid choice all around, especially for players who prioritize traction and support, but we suggest holding off until you can get the Luka 3 on discount. Read the full review. Price $130.

7.8/10
Total Score
Buy Jordan Luka 3

New Balance Fresh Foam BB V2

The New Balance Fresh Foam BB V2 just might be New Balance’s best basketball shoe to date. With this shoe, you’re getting elite traction that can handle outdoor play with ease, a thick plush cushioning system (that’s also ideal for outdoors), excellent materials and build, and this is completely subjective, one of the best-looking hoop shoes of the year. Read the full review.

9/10
Total Score
Buy New Balance Fresh Foam BB V2

Curry 11

Under Armour’s approach to designing Curry shoes in recent years has apparently been “if it ain’t broke don’t fix it”. This has worked out well, as the Curry 8, the Curry 9, and the Curry 10 have all been excellent performance models, and each has improved slightly on the last. With the Curry 11 we might have reached the pinnacle of this approach. The one weakness of all the Flow Curry models has been the cushioning. Not that it was bad in any way, but Flow for basketball has been dense and neutral feeling underfoot, making the shoes that feature it fairly niche items.

With this new dual-density iteration of Flow, that one weakness has been addressed. This shoe has everything you know and love from the Curry signature line, with softer, bouncier cushioning. Read the full review. Price: $160

9.2/10
Total Score
Buy Curry 11

Way of Wade All City 11 V2

The Way of Wade All City 11 V2 is virtually identical to the original model, which is a very good thing. Both shoes feature amazing traction, which gets extra points for being outdoor-friendly. In the $150 price range, there really aren’t many shoes out there that will give you the same on-court performance, versatility, and all-around value as the Way of Wade All City 11 V2. Read the full review. Price: $150

8.5/10
Total Score
Buy Way of Wade All City 11 V2

Best Traction Basketball Shoes: Budget Options 2024

Check out our full list of the best budget basketball shoes here.

adidas Dame Certified

The adidas Dame Certified is Damian Lillard’s budget model for the year, a very solid performance basketball shoe overall. The Dame Certified features full-length Bounce cushioning which is on the reactive side, great durable traction, and a highly functional upper built with nice cheap layered materials. All of this for just $100, making this a great budget basketball shoe from adidas. Read the full review. Price: $95

8.5/10
Total Score
Buy adidas Dame Certified

Best Traction Basketball Shoes: Outdoor Options 2024

Check out our full list of the best outdoor shoes here.

Serious Player Only Player 1 Plus

The Player 1 was already a great hoop shoe and the Player 1 Plus takes things to another level. Everything has been refined and improved slightly in this version of the shoe: more versatile traction, better materials, better fit, … it’s just a better performance basketball shoe. The biggest drawback of the Player 1 Plus is the price. $180 is, admittedly, steep. But you are getting a ton of bang for your buck and excellent traction both indoors and outdoors. Read full review. Price: $180

8.5/10
Total Score
Buy SPO Player 1 Plus

Best Traction Basketball Shoes: Retro Options 2024

Air Jordan 1 Lost and Found

Air Jordan 1

The Air Jordan 1 is arguably the most recognizable shoe of all time. Once you see that big Swoosh on the side with the Wings logo, you know what you’re getting. And part of what you’re getting is terrific traction. Although most of the retros aren’t for performance, the traction is undeniably excellent. Right there in GOAT status. Quite fitting, don’t you think? Chris can vouch for how good it is. It might just pop your hip out. See AJ 1 reviews. Price: $180

9.5/10
Total Score
Buy Air Jordan 1
Social Status Nike Air Penny 2

Nike Air Penny 2

The Nike Air Penny 2 screams 90s, and so does its traction. Even though we can talk all day about the beautiful Uptempo-inspired outsole, we can also say that it’s functional. What’s remarkable is that it also gives insight into the tech in the midsole. Other tech specs include the large-volume Air Max unit and a forefoot Zoom Air unit. There’s also a carbon fiber plate that’s interestingly implemented to reduce weight. Read the full review. Price: $200

9.5/10
Total Score
Buy Nike Air Penny 2

Thinking of a shoe we should add to the best traction basketball shoes list? Comment below or message us on Instagram or Twitter.

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