Hoops with Whiz and Haley

Posted by Darren Urban on November 17, 2010 – 9:11 pm

Sometimes, when Ken Whisenhunt and Todd Haley were working with the Jets back in 2000, they would go play one-on-one basketball. Sometimes — or more often than sometimes — the loser would be ticked off enough that he’d take the car back by himself and make the winner walk back to the office.

They battled. And they worked together, back then and again with the Cardinals.

“When we were talking about pass routes, when we were talking about game-plan stuff, when we were doing all that, I think we had a great relationship,” Whisenhunt said. “It was only the physical part when it got competitive, when we did the one-on-one basketball or the golf or anything like that.  But that’s his nature and that’s my nature. I enjoyed that even when we almost came to blows. You’re mad at the time but afterwards you think about it fondly.”

There was a little basketball when Whiz and Haley came to Arizona. Not one-on-one anymore. These were mostly a handful of five-on-five games with a chunk of the coaching staff, games which I was privileged to be a part of. Whisenhunt and Haley always played on opposite teams, but I never really saw that infamous competitive fire (OK, once) and everyone always had a ride back.

“When you live in an office and share an office with somebody for a year, 365 days, and have to look at each other every day, you develop a bond,” Haley said. “Kenny and I have stayed in touch all through the years and we’ve always had kind of a deal that if one of us got an opportunity to help the other out, we would. Kenny came through on that one a couple of times.

“I’m indebted to Kenny but like I said it’s more than that. He’s a friend of mine. … That’s what’s good about this game and the relationships that are built. You’ll have those forever.”

As for the basketball games, well, maybe they could have used a ref more often.

“Depends on who you ask,” Whisenhunt said, explaining whether Haley fouled a lot on the court. “If you ask me, I say yes he does. If you ask him he will vehemently deny it. It’s been a bone of contention between us for years.”

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Posted in Blog | 10 Comments »

10 Responses to “Hoops with Whiz and Haley”

  1. By Nick Pepe on Nov 17, 2010 | Reply

    Darren, who had the better jumper? And who was the better all around player and why?
    I like this post, lighten the mood a little !
    It can’t be all McNabb. Did I just go there? Sorry.
    Thank you
    Nick Pepe
    Still a Member!

  2. By Darren Urban on Nov 17, 2010 | Reply

    Nick —

    RE: Hoops

    I think they both had very similar games. Which is probably why they ended up in so many battles.

  3. By AndyStandsUp on Nov 17, 2010 | Reply

    I have a feeling Whiz was more the post up and driver kind of guy while Haley was the 2- shooting guard that took a ton of threes.
    Either way AZ needs to march down,use some pick and rolls and pound the ball inside. Box out, look for second chances and beat the opponent to the paint. High FG%, alley oops to Fitz, and backdoor passes to Breaston.
    And the defense could play a little zone, take some charges,and actually win a game now and then, it won’t hurt.

    And actually Nick, McNabb was a walk-on at Syracuse for Jim Boeheim, so another reason to salivate over Donovan seemingly rebounding his career.

  4. By Skiprim on Nov 18, 2010 | Reply

    So, once you saw a competitive fire? Any chance you can explain?

  5. By Darren Urban on Nov 18, 2010 | Reply

    Skiprim —

    RE: Hoops “fire”

    What happens on the basketball court stays on the basketball court. 😉

  6. By Skiptim on Nov 18, 2010 | Reply

    I meant to name myself Skiptim (but I guess Skiprim was appropriate), either a typo or a freudian slip. Anyway, that is okay. I’ll assume you all pulled out the baby oil and had a massage party.

  7. By Darren Urban on Nov 18, 2010 | Reply

    Skiptim —

    RE: Hoops

    Uh, no.

  8. By cards62 on Nov 18, 2010 | Reply

    I of course am glad that Haley gets his shot to be a head coach as that is what he wants, but I sure do miss him and wish he was still here coaching with us.
    WE have had a lot of debates on who was the most important to our success, Whiz, Haley, Warner, or Fitz with his great run in the playoffs. I think it was a combination of all 4. Whiz is still my coach. He and Graves have very much confused me in 2010 but I hope the 2 have enough sense to get us quality OC, DC, and quarterbacks next season. Andrew Luck is the one we want my friends. Go Cards beat the Chiefs.

  9. By Barry Bond on Nov 20, 2010 | Reply

    NFL network experts just blasted the Cardinals! All KC has to do to beat Arizona is PASS. The Cardinals can’t stop the pass and they can’t stop the run. Easy win for the Chiefs. And they noted if the 49ers beat the Bucs Sunday and the Seahawks lose the 49ers are only one game out of first. Can you imagine a team that was once 1-6 winning the division when everything is said and done? And who is this guy, quarterback Troy Smith San Francisco has? Where did they get him? I did’nt even know he was on their roster. They started with Smith, Carr, and Davis as their 3 quarterbacks. If Troy Smith was on the waiver wire could have the Cardinals signed him? He has looked good the last three Niner games!

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