NBA draft day 1996. Selected by the Charlotte Hornets as the 13th pick in round 1 is a high school kid by the name of Kobe Bryant. Wait, selected by the Charlotte Hornets? Yes, the Hornets. Immediately thereafter, this youngster was traded to the Los Angeles Lakers and as they and we all know, the rest is history. But what if this man-child had never been traded? I guess we will never know if Kobe could have achieved the epic feats that would be 5 NBA championships. Championships he earned in a Laker uniform. But thanks to Nike and designer Eric Avar, the memory of that fateful draft day has been brought back to us in the form of Kobe Bryant shoe.
Beginning in 2008 with the Kobe IV, Nike has blessed the sneaker world with a “Draft Day” edition of Kobe Bryant shoes. All editions, including the Kobe V and Kobe VI shoes were dropped in the original Charlotte Hornets colors of purple and teal. The colorways may be similar, but the first shoe released has an interesting history.The first “Draft Day” edition of the Kobe signature sneaker line is actually quite infamous.
The first “Draft Day” release actually had the date of the draft, 6.11.96 emblazoned on the back of the heel tab. Very cool! Unfortunately it was the wrong date. The actual date of Kobe’s draft class was 6-26-1996. As soon as Nike realized they had made a pretty serious error, they re-released the shoe with the correct date, 6.26.96. Sweet! Due to Nike’s error, sneakerheads now had two different shoes to cop. Dubbed the “Wrong Days” and the “Right Days”, the Kobe IV Draft Day presents the unique opportunity to have the same colorway of a dope shoe in 2 separate editions.
Since Nike’s initial offering of the Kobe IV Draft Day, the last two years have brought us the same theme and similar colorways…..without the date of the draft. The wrong date or the right date. This year’s model and colorway is similar in color to the two previous styles. It uses white on the snakeskin upper, a purple Swoosh, and teal accents on the midsole and heel cup.
If you want a piece of history, 1996 draft day history, the Kobe IV “Draft Day” is one for the collection. Actually two for the collection if you can track down both the “Wrong Days” and the “Right Days”. Among the numerous Nike shoes for basketball that you can buy, these Kobe Bryant shoes would be the only shoes that can say that they were drafted in the first round of the 1996 NBA Draft.