Feb 18, 2022; Cleveland, OH, USA; Former Cleveland Cavaliers player Richard Jefferson motions to the crowd during the second half of the Ruffles NBA All-Star Celebrity Game at the Wolstein Center. Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

Former NBA forward Richard Jefferson has done just about everything when it comes to the game of basketball, playing on eight teams over his 17-year NBA career. He has been working with ESPN as an analyst since 2019. Now, he will experience yet another role in the game: Officiating.

Jefferson will jump in as a referee during the second quarter of Monday night’s Summer League game between the New York Knicks and Portland Trail Blazers and then go on-air during halftime to discuss his experience in the new role. He reportedly attended the daily officiating meetings held in Las Vegas for the NBA Summer League to help teach him the nuances of officiating.

This news has extremely mixed reactions around the NBA world. Some believe that it will be a really cool experience for Jefferson, and think that it could do some good for broadcasters to get an understanding of how it feels to referee an NBA game.

However, others think that this could end up being a complete disaster, and don’t really understand why he has decided to make this move into officiating for the night.

There can definitely be arguments for and against Jefferson being named as a referee for Monday night’s game.

On one hand, it is only the NBA Summer League and it doesn’t exactly count for much, even if he does an awful job. However, considering that many players are fighting for NBA roster spots, an inexperienced ref could definitely end up having a negative impact on someone’s career.

Whether or not Jefferson is good as an official, it will definitely be entertaining to see how he does in his new role on Monday night.


About Reice Shipley

Reice Shipley is a staff writer for Comeback Media that graduated from Ithaca College with a degree in Sports Media. He previously worked at Barrett Sports Media and is a fan of all things Syracuse sports.