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Nike Kobe X (10) Elite Performance Review

To splurge, or not to splurge… that is the question…

Nike Kobe X (10) Elite Performance Review 1Traction – Nothing has changed between the Kobe X & their Elite counterpart in terms of traction. Same pattern is used, and we don’t recommend them for outdoor players. They performed great, just as they had in the previous Kobe X Performance Review, on any court or court condition. Some have said that they slip in the shoe, not sure if that is true or not… but figured I’d throw it out there. Based on my experience alone, I’ve never encountered a problem with the Kobe X’s traction at all.



Nike Kobe X (10) Elite Performance Review 2Cushion – Much like the traction, the cushion hasn’t changed at all from the regular Kobe X. I like the cushion quite a bit, but I won’t say its amazing. The TPU cage, as I’ve mentioned in the Kobe X Performance Review, restricts the compression a bit. Not enough to make things uncomfortable, because these are really comfortable, but enough to where you can’t feel certain things – like the heel Zoom – as well as you could if it weren’t as restricted.



Nike Kobe X (10) Elite Performance Review 3Materials – Now this is where things get switched up from the original Kobe X. Nike removed that Fuse that I dislike, and replaced it with Flyknit. I was really hoping that they’d have figured out how to use Flyknit in more of a raw sense, but they still glued the hell out it… at least most of it. There are some small sections on the midfoot that are pure knit, but its not enough to compare it to something like the XX9 or J Crossover 2. Now, I do like this setup way more than the Fuse setup… but I don’t think it makes that much of a difference, with all the glue they used, to really say there is a true performance benefit between one setup over the other.


Nike Kobe X (10) Elite Performance Review 4Fit – They fit true to size, but they are on the snug side at the forefoot. I find it weird that I’ve had a slightly different fit in the forefoot with every pair of Kobe X’s I’ve worn… these actually give me the most blisters due to the little TPU ridges that pop up right at the toe area. The All-Star edition I wore never gave me any problems, then the 5 a.m. Flight needed some break-in time… and these just f*ck my feet up every time I play in them for more than 2 hours at a time. Other than those issues, they do a good job of locking the foot into the shoe… much better than the Kobe 9 Elite too.

The collar on the Kobe X Elite is thinner and fits the foot with the shoe as one whole piece. So when you’re moving around everything is connected. Whereas the Kobe 9 Elite had two parts to the shoe… there was the shoe itself, and then there was the collar. They moved separately and some people found them to feel a little clunky while I just found the extra collar to be more of an annoyance.


Nike Kobe X (10) Elite Performance Review 5Support – Same thing as the regular Kobe X. The fit & lockdown do most of the work while the base of the shoe provides more support that what we’ve gotten from some of the past Kobe’s without limiting movement due to all the flex grooves.




Nike Kobe X (10) Elite Performance Review 6Overall – They play almost the same as the regular Kobe X’s. Yes, I like the material on these more than the Fuse, but I don’t feel that it’s worth the additional money. Much like I didn’t find the regular Kobe X compared to the Kobe 9 to be worthy of the price hike. There are still plenty of Kobe 9’s out there – and they’re starting to go on-sale – so I’d recommend grabbing a pair of those if you wanted great performance without spending ‘too much’ – I say too much very loosely. But if you absolutely ‘need’ the ‘latest thing’ out then feel free to drop $225 as you’ll still be getting a great performer. So if money isn’t an issue, then go for it. If money is an issue, you won’t be doing yourself any disservice by grabbing last years model at a discounted rate.

Nike Kobe X (10) Elite Performance Review 7

  1. I might just pass on this generation of Kobe altogether. My last hope will be the HTM Elite lows dropping in the U.S. this summer.

  2. Great review bro! First commenter here. I just wanted to ask a off topic question that is sorta on topic. I have a pair of kobe 8’s that are begining to break down so i just wanted to ask if i should get a new pair of kobe 8’s or the kobe 10/10 elite or get another model thats in your personal rotation or at the top of your rotation. The 8’s and the clutchfits are my main rotation so far so i just wanted to ask your opinion. Thanks for everything man.

  3. Spot on with the Kobe 9 Elite comparison. Clunky and seperate feel. Gonna try these sneaks in a few days! Great review Nightwing!

  4. So nothig great about the kobe 10 altogether i guess.
    And you are correct. Kobe 9s are on sale right now and its a better perfomance shoe than the 10s.

  5. interesting but im not sure i can get them very easy ly i still love the kobe 9s than this if they don have this thing any more in the outlet i rather get this for sure but to be honest Nightwing i still love the kobe 9s i love the kobe 10 elite high cause of the flynit and i think they have better lockdown then the nines its something i look on to and i wish im lucky if my sister will buy me some kobe 10 elite high good thing but frist i have to w8 im not so sure i can get them but if im lucky im smash this shoes ill grab them quickly

  6. I’ve had some slippage in the shoe, not bad traction but the j crossover 2 is my go to right now with high marks across the board for me. Wish the Kobe line pushed boundaries like the last couple of years

  7. They didn’t even need to try hard. They have fit down in the kobe 5 and the traction from the 9s. It’s sad how name sells more than quality and performance.

  8. I definitely thought the fit and material score would improve with the flyknit. It just seems odd that JB can utilize flyknit so well and Nike can’t. Anyway, I have a pair of the 5am flight 10s and I absolutely love them. If they came out with flyknit lows I would probably cop though.

  9. Hey NW, do you know where I can buy just the lunarlon insert for the Kobe 9 EM low? I’m a freshman in HS and will be doing 2-a-days this summer to get ready for next season so I want to make sure that the cushion lasts the whole summer. Shoes fit fine, just need a new insert. Thanks!

  10. One question: how is the transition? Kobe 9s feel extremely bulky on the heel so you got a sloppy feel when you ran. I’m a heel striker so it really bothered me. If they improved that, I may cop on discount.

      1. I am also a heel striker and had to try to stay off my heel more in the Kobe 9. Was easier to do in the Elite because of the height.

        On one hand, these have more overall cushion in the heel. On the other the ride is not as fluid and the midsole overall feels harder, because of the encapsulation. I don’t know if that would be better or worse for you, but personally I didn’t care for the Kobe 10 at all so far

  11. I have the Kobe X and the traction is absolutely terrible even if you swipe every dead ball it’s still not enough. I play high school ball and the courts are a little dirty. Everything else is really nice about the shoe but the traction is an absolute kill.

  12. Hey nightwing, I’ve always been a big fan of your reviews and have valued your opinions for every pair of basketball shoes that I own. I have been debating about getting the J Crossover 2’s (Black Colorway) or the Kobe X Elite (Rose Gold) – I’m just going to assume that I can expect the Rose Gold colorway to perform much like purple colorway. Out of curiosity, what shoe would you recommend based purely upon performance?

  13. Are the Kobe 10 flyknit materials feel the same, better, or worse than the Kobe 9 flyknit material?

  14. Nightwing2303 maybe it’s just me but I’ve been playing in kobes since the kobe 5. Now at 10. And I feel the x have had the worst traction or grip ever. 6-9 have been good. I feel I can’t move as good in the x. I play in a ok gym the floor is fine and although I haven’t slipped or anything I don’t feel safe with the traction. Judy throws me off I’ve been playing in kobes for a while and everyone seems to like the x traction

    1. If you havent slipped then what is the issue? I’ve played in them from 4-10, and the 5 is still the one with the ‘worst’ traction, which was still perfectly fine on certain courts.

  15. I NEED HELP! I was wondering if I should get the Melo M10 “All Star” or the Lebron 11 “Independence Day” for the same price. I will mostly be playing indoor, and I am a guard, I love shoes with good traction and cushioning+comfort. I also don’t care that much about ventilation. Thank you very much!!

  16. Hey everyone sort of off topic question here not sure where to ask. I’m looking for a shoe that is something in between the air tech challenge 2 and the air flight huaraches. the upper collar area where the last two holes for the shoelaces is is like the air flight in that it is sort of cut out for less material. The rest of the shoe including the swoosh area and the outsoles is like the air tech in that u can see the air. These shoes where on sale and had a ridiculously comfortable cushion. Please let me know

  17. The upper on these is kind of bastardized, it’s not the solid fuse-based upper with Flyknit overlay from the IX but it’s also not the seamless knit upper of the Jordan XX9. The result is predictably weak, with pretty limited support. The whole ankle portion is essentially worthless, making the height a total gimmick this time around. In addition to the relative lack of lockdown, the components of the upper don’t work as well together this year and are really poorly designed for the tooling on the Kobe X, which might not be salvageable anyway with its curiously hard Lunar capsules and all around clunkiness.

  18. Hey Nightwing, just wondering if the Kobe X Elite is a suitable shoe for a point forward? I’m 6’5 but over here in England I play post mostly but will play point in scrimmage. What I’m basically asking is if the shoes have a good support on the ankles like the Lebron X did, and if they’re a good shoe if you like to dunk a lot?

  19. I was thinkin about doin an ID with the Elite low but I cant find a pair anywhere near me to try the fit. Got the Superfly 3 in a 13.5, the CP3’s in a 14, the Curry 1 Low in a 14, and the Curry 1 Dark Matter in a 13. Any suggestions for size with these? Would you even drop $240 for the Elite Low ID?

  20. If u were a person that plays basketball and u have 1 bad ankle would u consider this shoe (Kobe 10 elites) for when u play? And how does ur ankles feel when ur wearing them do they have good ankle support?

  21. hey nightwing, do you think this traction pattern would perform better if it were solid instead of translucent? hoping for your reply! more power!

  22. Spot on with the description of the upper. On the 9 elite, the collar felt like it was going another way, but on these it wass spot on. I think though that the upper on the 9 elite feels more “natural” because the upper on these is a lot slimmer, and so it lets you feel the glue. The heel feels great, but I wish they implemented thicker Lunar in the rest of the foot. Great review!

  23. i just want to know if the traction of kobe x make noise? like some of the shoes? I have one pair of kobe x green vino and the traction was bad like i was slipped but i havent played in a woodtiles gym. Is there anyone tell me that my shoes are original?

  24. My collar has started to split and fray, and I estimate that I’ve only played at most 35 games in them. Pretty disappointed.

  25. Guys, I need help, I have a little bit wide feet.
    I don`t know how they gonna fit, `cause everyone foot is different.
    I wear size 12.

    Please , I need your help guys.
    I`m 5`10 Guard

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