Originally written on Mo Better Shoes  |  Last updated 5/15/13
Growing up in Italy, Kobe Bryant was an avid basketball and soccer player and remains a dedicated soccer fan to this day. Now Nike pays tribute to Kobe’s love of both sports with the KOBE 8 MAMBACURIAL, a basketball shoe inspired by the unique design of the Nike Mercurial Vapor IX football boot. Since its launch 15 years ago, the Mercurial has always stood out from the rest. Bold and exciting, ultra lightweight and worn by the best in the game, the boot’s color and design ensure its players are noticed on the pitch. The KOBE 8 MAMBACURIAL fuses key design attributes of basketball and soccer shoe uppers and includes a number of details borrowed from the Nike Mercurial Vapor IX. The striking Fireberry colorway is taken straight from the soccer boot and applied to the Nike Engineered Mesh upper of the latest Kobe Bryant signature shoe. Oversized white “NIKE” script appears on the medial side of each shoe, and an electric-lime Swoosh shifts from the side to just over the toe. "Mambacurial" is notated on the backside of the tongue, and the upper rests atop a grass graphic and translucent green rubber outsole. "Soccer boot design has influenced my shoe in the past but the KOBE 8 MAMBACURIAL brings it full circle," Bryant says. "It's great to see powerful design come together across sports." {gallery}kobe8mambacurial{/gallery} Kobe Bryant and Nike Basketball give basketball fans the chance to familiarize themselves with soccer inspiration with the KOBE 8 MAMBACURIAL. The shoe is now available at select retailers and nike.com internationally; in North America, the shoe will be available June 7. Follow us on Twitter @mobettershoes. You can follow Ian on Twitter @soxanddawgs. And be sure to like us on Facebook as well.
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