No - he's definitely serving on a ship somewhere as Gary and he knew each other for 15 years at the time of TOS S1 Where No Man Has Gone Before. At 7 years from taking command of the Enterprise, he's already served on the U.S.S. Republic, and put Ben Finney on report, and has encountered a Cloud Creature that killed the Caprain and half the crew of the U.S,S. Farragut. (Which IMO was why having Kirk in command of the Farragut in the SNW S1 A Quality of Mercy alternate timeline was (IMO) a nice touch.