Easily the most polarizing technology produced by Nike, Shox makes you feel a certain kind of way just hearing the name. The cushioning setup utilizes multiple columns to distribute energy when an athlete lands and jumps. Energy-efficient foam within the columns offer responsiveness that aims to mimic springs. The on-foot feel of Shox cushioning lands somewhere between Air and vulcanized rubber – more responsive than Air, less stiff than rubber. In retrospect, Shox didn’t live up to their springy marketing claims; when compared to Air or even Lunarlon the tech can’t keep up. With that said, lovers of Shox swear by it. Credit Nike’s innovation and inventiveness because the idea of Shox challenged what shoe cushioning could be and for that we should be thankful. The initial applications of shox were initially limited to running and training shoes but in 2001 Shox leapt into the basketball lane. Nike basketball kicks utilizing Shox enjoyed seven years of solid hoops shoes with some truly beautiful designs. We’ve ranked our top-5 favorite Nike Basketball Shox shoes (say that five times fast) of all-time below. Take a look and let us know what you think. What was the best BB Shox shoe back in the day? Tell us on Instagram throughout the day!
honorable mention: 01′ BB4
It would be vile and sacrilegious to not mention the BB4, the grand daddy of Shox. Debuted back in 2001 the BB4 stands for basketball four AKA basketball shoes with four shox columns. Made famous by Vince Cater (namely his ’00 Olympic dunk) the BB4’s instantly recognizable design makes it a cornerstone of footwear from the early 2000’s. It didn’t make our list because it’s had plenty of time to shine in various countdowns – we wanted to spread the love!
03′ Nike VC III
The maturity of Shox and the VC line as a whole is on full display with the III. Full-length Shox are back but with a more muted upper resulting in the most classy Vince Carter shoe in his catalog. ’03 Vince was prime Vince, the league was his sand box and the VC III’s were his weapon of choice.
03′ Nike Shox Status
Nike’s Shox Status lives for team basketball with its team friendly colorways. The minimalistic upper takes a back seat to the shoe’s instantly recognizable Shox columns, but the real standout here are the Shox/ Zoom Air combination. Zoom in the forefoot perfectly accentuates the Shox’s stiffness with light, bouncy, air. Clean lines and colorblocking options set these off.
02′ Nike Shox Stunner
We love how the Shox Status created a lane for themselves. This Shox entry in the illustrious Alpha Project looks like nothing else, maybe the Duncan 2 but outside of those we dare you to find a more unique upper. Straps, zippers, pods, and plastic webbing… it’s all there. The Shox Status needs to retro soon, we’d love to see these on a current NBA court!
05′ Nike Shox Bomber
We’re suckers for weird strap setups and the Bomber has one of the coolest setups of the ’00’s. An Achilles strap paired with a low heel allowed for freedom of movement second to none at the time. The Bomber’s crazy under appreciated with solid Player Exclusives, great Nike ID options and two cut options – high and low. The ‘Elite’ series had some hits and misses, the Shox Bomber was for sure a hit in the streets and in the NBA. Nike pushed visibility of the Shox with some of their top athletes wearing the model throughout the ’05-06 season like Shawn Marion, Jermaine O’Neal, and Andre Kirilenko.
02′ Nike VC II
The VC II took the shroud off the VC I and took Shox to the next level. The Vince Carter IIs were the first kicks to feature full-length Shox and they were insanely comfortable. Clean colorways like, white/silver, white/red and black/grey made the shoe accessible for any team. Maybe Nike’s perfect commercial for the shoe is why we remember it so fondly, maybe it’s Vince himself, but all we know is that the sequel was the best Shox ever made.