words // Brandon Richard
Before Kobe Bryant became a five-time NBA Champion, MVP and 15-time All-Star, he was an 18-year old rookie playing with high expectations in sunny Los Angeles. With an unlimited amount of youthful talent at his disposal, Bryant entered the 1997 Slam Dunk Contest, joining a field that also included names like Ray Allen and Michael Finley. After advancing to the finals, Kobe nearly scored perfect with an effortless between-the-legs throwdown that earned him the championship. On his feet for the contest? An eye-catching purple colorway of his rookie season shoe, the EQT Elevation, which has been rebranded the Crazy ’97 for a highly anticipated 2013 retro drop.
The Crazy 97 is now available in the original ‘Dunk Contest’ colorway, featuring a purple synthetic upper, EVA molded midsole, Microlite stripes and number ‘8’ holograms representing Kobe’s old jersey number. Pretty much exactly as you remember it from 1997.
Additionally, adidas introduces an all-new colorway inspired by Kobe’s birthplace — Philadelphia. The shoe tackles the 76ers’ color scheme, bringing red and black together on the upper with royal blue finding a home on the 3-Stripes and outsole.
Relive the earliest days of Kobe’s legendary playing career by picking up a pair of these retro adidas basketball shoes here today.