Richard Jefferson Entertains And Laughs With Fans During Refereeing Debut

Even as the dog days of summer settle in, there’s always a random spark that changes the monotony. As the NBA Summer League is five days away from concluding and having peaked in its on-court action and courtside cameos, Richard Jefferson’s sudden appearance as a referee was the talk of social media conversation Monday night.

After several sessions to prepare for his refereeing debut, the former NBA vet turned ESPN analyst officiated the second quarter of Monday’s matchup between the New York Knicks and Portland Trail Blazers– an ironic occurrence given Jefferson’s best playing days being with the ex-New Jersey Nets and his history of criticizing the Knicks.

“It’s been amazing because I love the game of basketball,” Jefferson said. “I like talking about the game of basketball, so now I get an opportunity to learn a whole new piece of the game. That’s like my dream, for a basketball junkie, to sit in there and see how the referees think, how they talk, how they act, how they work together as a team. That type of stuff to me is so beneficial.”

While Jefferson’s actual performance was far from perfect, it certainly was when it came to inspiring takes from our social media timelines.

And you’re doing your job if Knicks head coach Tom Thibodeau is heckling you, right?

Lastly, was this right or wrong call by RJ?

In all seriousness, salute to Richard Jefferson for taking on this task and using it as a way to further educate himself and the fans on what it’s like to officiate at a high level.

Popular Culture

5 Twitter Features You May Not Know Of and Why You Should Be Using Them

When using social media platforms such as Twitter, there are many features that you may not know about and should be taking advantage of. Here’s a list of five Twitter features you might not be aware of and how to use them:

1. Super Follows
Reed Rosen/Twitter

Super Follows are a monthly subscription service where you can pay to see and be a part of exclusive content for your favorite creators. It entails seeing tweets only for the user’s Super Follows, having access to Super Follow only Twitter Spaces, and having a cool pink badge next to your username whenever you reply to one of their tweets. 

2. Twitter Communities

Twitter Communities is exactly what it sounds like. It allows people to tweet, share thoughts, and connect about a specific topic in its own tab. Any user on Twitter can start their own and make it public or private. Also, you can personalize your community by choosing moderators, setting your own rules, changing the logo, and much more.

3. Twitter Blue
Reed Rosen/Twitter

Twitter Blue offers a ton of features at a pretty low cost. It’s $2.99 USD a month and is available on iOS, Android, and Web clients. When you subscribe to Twitter Blue, it includes ad-free articles, a tab to see the top articles within your network of people, an easy thread reader, custom navigation for your tabs, the ability to preview and undo tweets, choose your app’s theme, make your profile picture an NFT you own, upload videos that are 1080p and up to ten minutes long, and change your Twitter app icon on your home screen.

4. Pinned DMs

Pinning your DMs is one of the newest features Twitter has to offer. It was released in February of this year and it allows you to pin up to five DMs. The same way you can pin text messages in your messages app, it acts as the same thing. This is valuable if you DM with a lot of people, and you want to keep the most important people at the top so you never miss their DMs. 

5. Search for a Tweet

Search for a Tweet is highly underused. It allows you to search for a specific tweet from any Twitter user. How it works: You type into the search bar, “from:{the Twitter account’s handle, but don’t include the @} {Key word/phrase}. For example, if I wanted to search for the tweet: “Shoutout to farmers 🧑‍🌾”, it would look like the image above.


What Have We Learned From NBA Free Agency So Far?

As fireworks continue lighting up across the United States in honor of Independence Day, the NBA has witnessed its share of them. Since last Thursday, the 2022 NBA free agency has kept fans, media, and even players glued to their phones in great anticipation of what could be next.

Sparked by the evolving nature of player movement, the known and unknown worked together in creating the madness we experienced during free agency’s opening stretch. While fans knew of the likelihood that Jalen Brunson would sign with the New York Knicks, we were thrown a curveball upon the news of Rudy Gobert getting traded to the Minnesota Timberwolves. Even the broad daylight robbery of a trade done by the Boston Celtics with the Indiana Pacers threw us in for a loop.

As free agency’s opening week concludes in two days and the shift turns to the second wave of signings– while we’ll also wonder who gets traded first: Kyrie Irving or Kevin Durant?– now is the perfect time to examine what has happened so far.

Here are our five biggest takeaways from the opening weekend of NBA free agency.

Why leave home when there’s a super-max deal?

Even with the combined desire by fans and media to see players leave their home teams, it’s becoming less of a reality given the introduction of super-max contracts. Fueled by incentives including All-Star and All-NBA selections, players are quickly putting pen to sheets near the end of their rookie or latest deal.

Within the first 48 hours of free agency, six super-max contracts were signed that totaled over one-point-two billion dollars (Devin Booker, Bradley Beal, Nikola Jokic, Ja Morant, Darius Garland, and Zion Williamson).

Put some respect on Brian Windhorst’s name

The long-time ESPN Insider was arguably the MVP this past weekend, given his memorable explanation behind the Utah Jazz’s way of thinking before they moved All-Star center Rudy Gobert.

All meme-worthy moments aside, Windhorst’s connecting of the dots between the Jazz suddenly moving Royce O’Neale and current team CEO Danny Ainge’s willingness to start from scratch painted a great picture of what would happen in Salt Lake City.

Productive veterans will always be paid

Even for a league that is getting younger, they will always pay productive veterans– even if it’s expensive. The Philadelphia 76ers and Milwaukee Bucks, two legitimate Eastern Conference competitors, both signed or resigned productive veterans, PJ Tucker and Bobby Portis, at a combined cost and commitment of $79 million over seven years.

You never know when the trade market will be active

Minus an on and off busy night from the Draft, there wasn’t much happening in the trade market before Kevin Durant’s sudden trade request last Thursday. But you still have to remember this: Even with a busy rumor mill, it doesn’t mean trades will happen right now.

In the case of KD, the Nets can let his situation play out longer due to four years remaining on his contract. Regarding a potential Kyrie Irving for Russell Westbrook trade, the hold-up can be over one thing. And if you’re the Jazz, you must be 100% certain you want to let go of All-Star guard Donovan Mitchell.

Who you got: Woj or Shams?

I’m more of a Woj guy but Shams is nice too *shrugs.

Culture Music

How Zane Built a YouTube Channel with 3.3 Million Subscribers

Vine may have ended its run in 2017, but content creator Zane Hijazi only picked up the pace. 

Among Vine fanatics, Hijazi needs no introduction. He shared a wildly popular page with his friend (and fellow YouTube convert) Heath Hussar, which amassed a dedicated fan base of over 3.4 million followers. But when Twitter announced that it would be discontinuing the mobile app on January 1, Hijazi switched gears and began actively posting on his self-titled YouTube channel. His innovation allowed him to catch fire on a new platform, sustain a fiercely loyal viewership (his current YouTube subscriber count exceeds 3.3 million) and create hours of addictive content with his troupe of YouTuber friends called The Vlog Squad

Fans of Hijazi’s channel should expect the unexpected. He has dyed his hair pink and released a music video for an original song, “BOOM.” He often features his sister, Hidaya, even surprising her with a car on video in honor of his 200th episode. The Vlog Squad—including fellow YouTube sensations David Dobrik, Liza Koshy, Scotty Sire and more—appear regularly, pulling off group stunts like an ‘80s aerobic workout and painting like Bob Ross with Liza Koshy.

On a recent trip to New York City, Hijazi stopped by the ONE37pm office in Hudson Yards to discuss his unique online presence, the future of his channel and his advice for aspiring vloggers.

For people unfamiliar with your work, how would you describe yourself and your channel?

Zane Hijazi: I’m a very outgoing personality. I don’t have a specific talent. I think people just love me for who I am and how I see things and the way I joke about things. That’s what they get when they subscribe to me. They like the way I talk about situations and things that go on in the world. When people followed me back when I was on Vine, they followed me for my personality, mainly. As that is evolving, they get to see that when they subscribe to my channel. 

You started your social media career on Vine and eventually moved to YouTube. How was that transition from creating six-second clips on Vine to 10- or 20-minute YouTube videos?

Hijazi: So back in the Vine days, it was really easy to come up with bits because it only had to be six seconds. But then it was also really hard, too, because there would be an idea we wanted to execute but we weren’t able to because we didn’t have much time. So when we moved onto YouTube in the beginning, it was really easy to make videos because not only would we be able to do our bits long form, but it was more fun because we had time to fill up that gap…but then it started getting harder and harder. We were so excited at the beginning of YouTube. We were filming everything and we’d post twice a week. It was great, and then it got to the point where we thought, “OK, we ran out of ideas. We need to now start coming up with new ones,” and that’s when it started getting really hard. But if you were to tell me to go back to Vine, I would be done. I cannot think in the Vine process anymore.

How has your channel evolved since you started posting videos three years ago? 

Hijazi: I used to do a lot of skits because that’s what I was used to when I was doing Vines with Heath…I think [the YouTube channel] turned more into a visual podcast but with a lot of editing. I feel like I’m more myself now on my YouTube channel than any other platform. 

What’s been one of your favorite recent videos?  

Hijazi: I would say my Night King video when I turned into the Night King. I couldn’t believe how good of a job they did. I looked like I walked off the show. I’m a perfectionist; it has to be perfect when I do something, so the fact that they were able to nail it really got me excited. It was a great video and everybody loved it. Even people that don’t watch Game of Thrones—which is crazy to me that they don’t watch the show—really enjoyed it because I looked crazy.

So we know you love YouTube. But between Instagram and Twitter, which would you choose if you only had one? 

Hijazi: Twitter. Twitter is so funny. Every time I’m on it, I find the funniest shit. Instagram is more pictures and who looks the best, who uses Facetune to make the best pictures. Twitter is very real. It’s like “BOOM.” There’s a lot of things about Twitter I don’t like because I feel it can get hateful. But the funny stuff is really good. It’s like a great newspaper for your eyes.

What advice would you give to people trying to become successful YouTubers like you?

Hijazi: Stay consistent, which I do not do now, but I feel like in the beginning it’s very important to stay consistent and be yourself. Always think outside of the box. Don’t be within limits, which I do all the time, but I think that’s good advice to give other people who want to do this. And find friends that want to also film. I think that’s really important. I’ve learned that if I didn’t have the friends I do now, I don’t think I’d be doing this at all. So it’s good to have a support system with you when you film videos because you have to have good energy. It has to be real when you film. 

What’s something you haven’t tried yet on your channel but would love to do? 

Hijazi: I have these weird little ideas and every time I tell somebody they’re like, “OK…” but when I get it done in the end, they finally understand. I want to make a horror movie trailer, but the trailer is for a nonexistent movie. And I want to shoot each scene strictly for that trailer. I want to do it with all of my friends and I want to come up with a storyline and these scenes that I’m gonna do on the spot. But anything that I do, I always keep secret.

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