Hawaii coach Gib Arnold, like so many others, was shocked to hear of the sudden demise of former UH basketball star Chris Gaines.
Gaines, the all-time leading scorer in UH history at 1,731 points, died of a heart attack on Christmas in Orlando, Fla. He was only 42.
Arnold knew Gaines personally. Arnold was in Hawaii as a senior at Punahou the year Gaines came into the program under Gib’s father, then-UH coach Frank Arnold. The two are less than a year apart in age.
“I was in high school, and all preseason, after the season, I’d come and play pick-up ball with all the guys,” Arnold said after today’s practice. “So I got to know Chris pretty well and got to play with Chris. Just a real quiet scorer, just a great basketball player. You could tell he had loads of talent, and ended up being the leading scorer in the history of the school. It was earned with hard work. A heck of a player, and a real nice guy too. Everybody liked Chris.
“I heard about it coming in on the radio this morning. I was shocked. I know he’s about my age. It was a shocker for all of us who knew him or played with him at all.”