We’re still a month away from 2013, but the “Year of the Black Mamba” has already begun.

Ok, so technically it’s the Year of the Snake, but horoscope talk aside, the important thing here is that Nike has just (officially) revealed Kobe “Black Mamba” Bryant’s latest signature basketball shoe, the KOBE 8 SYSTEM.

Kobe Bryant isn’t necessarily the most beloved player in the NBA. But love him or hate him, there’s no denying his killer instinct on the hardwood. To compliment his speed, precision, and versatility on the court, Kobe will now have a sneaker that is just as clutch.

Inspired by Kobe’s game, and designed by Nike Designer Eric Avar, the KOBE 8 SYSTEM is the lightest (at 9.6 oz.) of the pervious seven models. Underneath the intimidating snakeskin silhouette is a seemingly endless list of performance tech, including a full length Lunarlon midsole, a Phylon Carrier, and a 3D Anatomical Heel Counter—combining to make a thoroughly impressive sneaker. The best element of the shoe, though, has to be the multi-directional traction outsole made from 1 MM web rubber. After all, what’s a basketball shoe without grip.

The global drop date for the KOBE 8 SYSTEM is December 20th, 2012 (Black/Sulver colorway). Find it at any decent sneaker store, or at Nike. Price starts at $140.

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