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Testing out the Kobe Bryant, LeBron James and Kevin Durant Christmas Day Nike shoes

The Venice Beach basketball courts have been the setting for a number of memorable sports-related moments. Lakers guard Kobe Bryant famously played there in a Labor Day pickup game before his rookie season and fractured his left wrist. The 1992 movie "White Men Can't Jump" was filmed there. And Lakers forward Ron Artest also has played his fair share of pickup games and pumped iron there.

So we chose the storied Venice Beach site for a test of three pairs of shoes worn by top players during their respective Christmas Day games. I tried out the shoes Sunday in matchups against Los Angeles Times sports writer Melissa Rohlin -- Bryant's Grinch-colored Nike Zoom Kobe VI, LeBron James' red LeBron 8 V2 and Kevin Durant's yellow Nike Zoom KD III. Rohlin played basketball at Crossroads and even attended Baron Davis' summer camp, so it's obvious she can play. Meanwhile, let's just say I'm glad I have my day job. Check out the video, directed by L.A. Times business reporter Nathan Olivarez-Giles, to see how it all went down.

-- Mark Medina

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The bench was on fire to start the season, but have been struggling ever since Luke started to get minutes. Coincidence?

My Laker Christmas Wish List:


- for Bynum's return to health ASAP.

- for Gasol to man up and guard the paint with effort and tenacity.

- for Fish to either quickly shoot or pass when passed to, instead of dribbling, trying to survey the floor, or driving to the basket.

- for reduced minutes for an aging and ineffective Fish.

- for Lamar to make the all-star team.

- for Artest to start hitting open shots.

- for Kobe's knees to be 100% by the all-star break.

- for the Lakers to use to their newly acquired trade exception to bulk up the front court.

- for a threepeat.

It's time to start it up:

...still crying inside. It's 2009 Christmas all over again.

Come on 2011. Show us a better focused Lakers Team!!

...still crying inside. It's 2009 Christmas all over again. Come on 2011. Show us a better focused Lakers Team!! Posted by: OCisMambaCounty | December 28, 2010 at 02:18 PM
Crying inside? CRYING INSIDE!!! I can't go out because everytime I think about that game I just cry like a Baby! LOL!!! I feel your pain. But this too shall pass after tonight...Hopefully!!

@MM...Kudos for a great thread. Loved watching you play. Now that is going above and beyond your normal job description. And nice jumpers by Melissa. Just a word of advice, never choose the shoes you lose in. LOL.
@CCX... That was an excellent defense of supporting Andrew Bynum, Mike. I agree 100% with everything you stated. It still boggles my mind that some Lakers fans want to trade this guy. He still has a good chance to become the Next Great Lakers Center.

MM: You got some game, bro!

Kobe's shoes gave you the best handle.

Bron's gave you a breakaway to the rim.

KD's, well your game lacked as did your look wearing those yellow shoes! lol...

Melissa though, props to her - girl's got game! Nice looking jumper. Maybe if Sparks need some jump-shooting...

Don't know if I would be caught wearing any one of those, even back in the day. Liked the Kobe's best though although green DEFINITELY wasn't his color on Xmas day.

Gotta confess I did have a pair of red Chuck Taylor's in high school, but always stuck to wearing black high-tops on the court. Actually I couldn't even imagine showing up to a pickup game in the South Bay wearing one of those colors, anyone caught wearing one of those colors better have had the game to match or they would have been trash-talked off the court lol...

Good stuff. One question though: Did you have to pay for those out of your own pocket? What do they run?


LakerTom: Thanks for your comment. Bynum is still young and is coming off another knee surgery, it's only been a few games.

The Lakers are lucky to have such a quality, young center. They don't have a promising young point guard, don't have such quality young players at other positions. The do have a great prospect at center, one who already has made contributions to two titles.

It's good to know that the future is covered as far as center, something you point out has been the Laker trademark tracing all the way back to Mikan.

I hope, wish, pray that Drew can remain injury free, that is my only concern about him. The surgeries he's had though aren't the type that would necessarily affect him for the rest of his career, so hopefully he can stay uninjured for a time and be able to build-on his progress.

And he just turned 23??? Judging by what he's done so far, there's a lot of great days ahead for Drew - and for us Laker fans too!



"MM: You got some game, bro"

Total brown nose comment. ;)

No (his game)

Anyways, bout Melissa, did anyone notice shes a left handed shooter and making them?
Any chance on replacing fisher with her?

i completely disagree!

I copped all three, and by far the most comfortable pair of shoes was the lebrons. Granted they were not the lightest but between the three i would wear the lebrons over the kobes any day.

Between the KD's and grinchs its hard to say which is more comfortbale but the look on the kobes is way more fly.

if i had to rate them id say lebrons are 1 kobes 2 and KD 3.

@MM - look like you guys were having fun.

Favorite line from White Men Can't Jump...."Tell Aunt Bee she better have my bean pies".

@63 Footer - if only the Lakers can bring that same energy Sly and co. had.

SA Rookie Gary Neal is sensing this is a big game....

“I can just tell by the way Coach Pop came in during the shootaround with his mentality that this is an extremely important game,” Neal said. “He’s emphasizing a lot of things, but more strongly than he has in awhile. Coach Pop sets the tone for us and lets us know what kind of game it is.”


Gotta say I sure envy the SoCal lifestyle...outdoors in shorts playing BBall in December! How great is that! This is coming from a man still digging out from the recent East Coast blizzard.

I'm not sure I would want video of me getting beat by a female circulating all over the internet. Especially one that is 8 inches shorter than me. Your dedication to the blog never ceases to amaze me! LOL!!

Haha yeah I definitely am glad I'm not suffering the East Coast blizzard. Hey Melissa won fair and sqaure. Plus she's a baller. No shame in losing to her lol


And Phil prolly has our Lakers reading some books.

Anyways, bout Melissa, did anyone notice shes a left handed shooter and making them? Any chance on replacing fisher with her? Posted by: Magia32 | December 28, 2010 at 03:19 PM
LMAO!!!!!!!!! Stop that!!!

"Anyways, bout Melissa, did anyone notice shes a left handed shooter and making them?
Any chance on replacing fisher with her?

Posted by: Magia32 | December 28, 2010 at 03:19 PM "


WOW! TALK ABOUT BLOG SYNC!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!]

And Phil prolly has our Lakers reading some books. Posted by: Magia32 | December 28, 2010 at 03:56 PM
You're on a Roll!!!!!!!! LOL!


This is what I want to see. I want to see Drew hustle and forget about the knee. I'm tired of seeing him jog up and down the court. You're back, Drew. The team needs you to be assertive and BIG. It's time to get down and play some ball.

I want to see Kobe add some variety to his game. Kobe is relying too much on the pinch post to create his offense. Duh...this makes him an easy target for double teams. Other teams know just where to funnel their defense.

That being said, I'd love to see Kobe get some calls when he's beaten from pillar to post.

I want to see Pau knock somebody down. Somebody, anybody. And then walk away. Hard and clean.

I'd like to see Lamar shoot 20 times a game when he's got a mismatch. Tonight the Spurs don't have anyone to defend LO. He should look for his own offense more.

I just want to see my team play with more unity and hustle. It's easy to say that the Lakers are a proven, veteran team who can and will respond when the bright lights shine. But...the past is just that. Now is the time.

Now is the time. Posted by: bronxlakerfan | December 28, 2010 at 04:03 PM
OK this is what I want to see...I want to see bronxlakerfan given the damn RCOTD!! That's what I want to see!!!!! MM...NOW IS THE TIME!!!!!!

Bronx....i like your's time to step up

momentum change tonight...

we play to nice....everyone is so happy to be,,,,,,, it's not a choir...come on guys lets go

Let's be honest 12/25/2010 is the day Nike jumped the shark.


Thanx for the props!!
On a much more serious note, please put me down on the bandwagon supporting and praying for Cap's Goggles' family member. I think to some degree, we all live in fear of being in the wrong place at the wrong time. There's no defense for that.

Magia: "MM: You got some game, bro"
Total brown nose comment. ;)
No (his game)"

Now, honestly, how many of you expected MM to be able to string together a couple of through-the-leg dribbles?

I'm surprised you didn't also mention, about Melissa replacing D-Fish, that her D is about as good...

BTW true story, in high school/college we'd always try to play 2-on-2, my friends and I. Usually it seemed we'd have 3 guys, someone was always missing. So my friend started bringing along his little brother, who had never played hoops before in his entire life having come from the Soviet Union and then Canada. I'd always end up with him on my team since I was tallest. I think he was like 12 or 13.

The first few games he really sucked lol, poor little guy, but soon he got better at passing and dribbling. We kept bringing him along and after a couple of years playing with us he actually got to be pretty good. He would play with us even if his big brother couldn't make it. Next thing you know he's starting point guard at Torrance High School. Literally from not knowing the sport to starting point guard in a few years. Crazy...


nice fundamental style you got there M&M.

i always wondered who would win between me and you 1 on 1. This video makes me feel like i could beat you in a 7 game series.

keep crossin em up

Hey guys, I just got out of General Hospital where I have spent the last two and a half days trying to get word of the condition of a family member who was assaulted by gang members. I won't be on the blog for a while as his condition is serious. He's not a gangmember and was just in the wrong place at the wrong time. Please please keep him in your prayers. I'll be back as soon as I can. Thanks Posted by: Cap's Goggles (83-79) | December 27, 2010 at 11:41 PM
(01) utzworld THE BANNER HOLDER – CHAPLAIN - Lord, please be with Cap's Goggles & family. Restore the health to the family member hurt in that SENSELESS act of gang stupidity. Bring the culprits to justice and manifest Your healing to the one who is hurt. You are a Healer. Please manifest yourself as such to this family.
(02) PSYCHEDLAKERGIRL – OWNER - Cap's Goggles - prayers out to your family member.
(06) MAMBA24 – Stay strong my brother you know you got all the Laker Nations Prayers!
(09) LAKERTOM - @CAPS GOGGLES... Our prayers will be with your family, Felix. Hope all ends well.
(10) LAKERSRULE(AMIT) - Cap Googles - Sorry to hear about your family member.Hope you find the courage and strength to help him pull through.Take care man.
(11) MCLYNE - My family will be praying for your wounded loved one. Some things in this world just don't make any sense.
(12) LROB - Caps Goggles – Your family member is in my prayers.
(13) JUSTALAKERFAN - My prayers go out to you and your family member. Gang violence is so stupid especially if your own kind do the shooting. Senseless just senseless waste of life. Hang in there bro.
(14) CYBERCOSMIX - Cap's Goggles: Take care in your time of pain. I pray that everything goes well with your family and he can make a full recovery. Looking forward to your return, the blog will be a lesser place until you return but the important thing is the healthy of your loved one. Hang in there, we're all pulling for you!
(15) D(EREK) J(ETER) - Our prayers are with you Cap.
(16) MARK G. -GL Caps googles
(17) BronxLakerFan - please put me down on the bandwagon supporting and praying for Cap's Goggles' family member. I think to some degree, we all live in fear of being in the wrong place at the wrong time. There's no defense for that.


On the previous thread, you wrote...

"I've predicted it before, and will repeat it here - Andrew Bynum in his prime will be the finest center in the league. Not spoken from the heart, as a Laker fan. Not spoken as a biased homer. Spoken as an NBA fan that watches (too much according to my wife =P ) hoops and enjoys the game - and is able to recognize that the Lakers have a diamond in the rough when it comes to Drew compared to centers around the league."

As a Laker fan, I sincerely hope you are right. And I would agree that the Bynum we saw just before each of his two knee injuries was a player who could legitimately be called one of the top 5's in the League.

But, I would respectfully say that you may be overlooking Dwight Howard. Howard has turned the corner from potential to true franchise player. He still has certain weaknesses such as his free throw pct., but the man is a load on both ends of the court. His defense and presence in the paint at this moment is exactly what we Laker fans hope for from Drew. Dwight IS what we think that Drew MAY become.

Drew has shown flashes of brilliance but has yet to
show the durability and availibility of a true franchise player. I, along with you and other Laker fans, hope that Andrew turns his potential into an appreciable reality.

bronxlaker: First, I hope you are staying warm tonight my friend! I have family in Jersey and Philly, this blizzard is a particularly nasty one by their comments. Yes, SoCal weather is a nice thing indeed, sorry we can't export some your direction...

I hear what you've saying about Drew. I don't have the concerns about his game though, he is really ahead of the curve as far as centers around the league for a player that has just turned 23.

I've said it before, the only center I'd trade Drew for would be Howard - however with the proviso that in 2 years time they be forced to trade Drew back. Why? He will just be entering his prime, and if his scoring touch is so nice now, well at that time he will *barring injury* be the finest all-around center in the league.

Gonna switch the HDTV over to the game now. Let's hope the Lakers show up for tonights game in San Antonio!

The only way San Antonio wins this game is if they get hot and hit their 3's. Lakers win tonight with Kobe leading the way with his passion.


Melissa is VERY Cute! And has a good jump shot!



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