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Puma MB 03: LaMelo Ball’s Signature Shoe 2023-24

Puma MB 03 English Review

Puma MB 03 Spanish Review

Puma MB 03

The Puma MB 03, LaMelo Ball’s third signature shoe, is very similar to the Puma MB 01 and MB 02, with slight, yet significant tweaks here and there which might just make this the best LaMelo model yet.

Colorway: LaFrance

Release Date: October 6, 2023

Price: $130

Total Score
Buy Puma MB 03

The Puma MB 01 was an all-time great performance model and perhaps the best first signature basketball shoe ever. The Puma MB 02 was a slight step back in the MB line in terms of on-court capabilities, but it was still a solid performance basketball shoe. One thing these two shoes did have in common, however, is that they are proper signature shoes: They stand out, and whether or not you like them visually, they demand attention.  

The Puma MB 03 takes all the best performance features of both of these models and jams them into the best aesthetic design yet.

Puma MB 03 Review

Puma MB 03 Specs:

Puma MB 03 Traction

Traction on the Puma MB 03 should work very well on clean indoor surfaces. The sole combines translucent and solid rubber and a coral-patterned traction system that is very reminiscent of another hall-of-fame on-court performance shoe, the adidas Crazy Explosive. If the MB 03’s traction performs anything like that shoe on court, this might just be one of the best-tractioned basketball shoes of the year.

In terms of outdoor performance, the rubber is rather tough and there is a good amount of it, but we still wouldn’t recommend these as a good outdoor option. It might be robust enough to handle a couple of outdoor excursions but don’t make these your go-to outdoor shoe.

Puma MB 03 Cushion

As far as the cushioning goes, we have almost the exact same setup as in the previous 2 MB models, which is good news. The midsole of the Puma MB 03 is compression molded EVA which is a slightly more dense and durable implementation of EVA, with heel and forefoot Nitro infused pucks.

You should expect a very similar on-court experience to the previous 2 models, that is to say, a very well-balanced cushioning setup that feels plush and comfortable underfoot, but does not sacrifice reactiveness or explosiveness on court. Even though this is more of a guard-specific setup, bigger players should enjoy it as well.

Puma MB 03 Materials

This is perhaps the best build we have seen to date in LaMelo Ball’s signature line, and maybe even the shoe’s best feature. 
The material selection is nothing special. We have a layered textile upper with some fuse overlays in the high-wear areas. The main textile is soft and sits on top of a base layer of mesh and feels nice in hand. Performance-wise, this will provide everything you need on court while keeping the shoe light and breathable.

But what makes this setup special is the implementation and depth of design it allows. There is no denying this is a wild-looking basketball shoe and the design team at Puma was able to incorporate many design cues seamlessly in this model. It might be a polarizing design but that’s what you want if you’re pushing the envelope. It will offer excellent performance on court. 

Puma MB 03 Support

Support is solid, and a big reason for that is the fit (more on that later). The shoe is built in a similar way to a Nike Kyrie shoe: a rounded medial side, and a flat lateral side. This will provide mobility on more exaggerated movements like crossovers but at the same time provide a stable base.

There’s also a midfoot shank plate, which combines with the thick midsole to give you torsional rigidity and then we have a really nice lacing system. This lacing configuration will allow you to personalize the shoe’s lockdown to get the best feeling and most secure ride for you (and your foot shape). Lastly, we have a nicely padded heel collar and a very substantial heel counter as well. This setup is comfortable and secure feeling, which is exactly what you want.

Puma MB 03 Fit

The MB 03 fits true to size, but it is that really great 1 to 1 performance fit that is ideal for lockdown and support. If this type of fit is too much for you, you can try going up half a size, but, as always, the best option would be to go in-store and try them on.

Puma MB 03 Overall

The Puma MB 03 might just be the best LaMelo signature shoe to date, which is saying something. In terms of on-court performance, the Puma MB 01 is hard to beat, but the MB 03 features better materials, and, in our opinion, a more refined and unique design, which might just clinch the W.

Buy Puma MB 03

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