Rob Pimental, Miami Heat equipment managerPosted by Inside Hoops
Next time you’re struggling to squeeze your carry-on suitcase into the overhead bin, imagine what it’s like to be Rob Pimental, an experienced business traveler who shows up for flights with 2,500 pounds of luggage and 65 pairs of expensive shoes.
Pimental is the Heat’s head equipment manager, and packing the defending NBA champions for a road trip is no small task. He packs for a traveling party of 48, which includes some of the league’s most high-profile and pampered athletes.
It is his job to make sure every player has not only four full sets of uniforms — two black and two red — but also customized sneakers (four or five pairs per player), undergarments and socks of choice, headbands, wristbands, elbow and knee pads, ankle braces, mouth guards, practice gear and warmup suits. He also packs 12 basketballs for practice.
His office is a Heat fan’s dream closet — floor-to-ceiling shoe boxes filled with impossible-to-buy sneakers, racks of Heat jerseys and shelves filled with Heat gear in every size.
He spent 19 years with the Sacramento Kings and joined the Heat last season, so he has learned the art of packing. The key, he says, is keeping checklists. He has many of them. Mostly on his iPad, and he checks them three and four times before every trip.
Reported by Michelle Kaufman of the Miami Herald