The vast amount of web data enables us to build knowledge bases with unprecedented quality and coverage. Named Entity Disambiguation (NED) is an important task that automatically resolves ambiguous mentions in free text to correct target entries in the knowledge base. Traditional machine learning based methods for NED were outperformed and made obsolete by the state-of-the-art deep learning based models. However, deep learning models are more complex, requiring large amount of training data and lengthy training and parameter tuning time. In this paper, we revisit traditional machine learning techniques and propose a light-weight, tuneable and time-efficient method without using deep learning or deep learning generated features. We propose novel adaptive features that focus on extracting discriminative features to better model similarities between candidate entities and the mention's context. We learn a local ranking model based on traditional and the new adaptive features based on the learning-to-rank framework. While arriving at linking decisions individually via the local model, our method also takes into consideration the correlation between decisions by running multiple recurrent global models, which can be deemed as a learned local search method. Our method attains performances comparable to the state-of-the-art deep learning-based methods on NED benchmark datasets while being significantly faster to train.