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An NBA Referee’s Apparent Burner Account Has A Ton Of Tweets Defending His Calls

The conversation about NBA officiating has gotten a bit out of control of late, as complaints about calls and non-calls has seemed to become a dominant topic every single night. For the most part, fans on Twitter are just screaming into the void (or the mentions of the NBA Officials or NBA main account with no reply), but there is one account that was out there standing ready to defend the honor of the officials — or, at least, one official.

NBA Twitter was enthralled on Thursday by the saga of @CuttliffBlair, a since-deleted Twitter account with no followers that only followed the NBA, NBA Officials, NBA Refs, Ref Analytics, and the George Mason women’s basketball team (which, we’ll get to in a minute). The account served one purpose: defending referee Eric Lewis in the mentions of seemingly anyone that would tweet about him in a negative way — particularly over the Western Conference Finals, where he drew the ire of some Lakers fans.

It certainly fits the profile of a burner account and given it was deleted after all of this went viral, it’s hard to imagine it being anything other than Lewis’ account — it also was apparently registered to Lewis’ AOL email. As for the accounts it followed, the various NBA ones make total sense, but the George Mason women’s team account seemed odd, until you learn his wife coaches there.

That makes it hard to imagine how this isn’t an account he manned, and while it’s totally understandable why you’d want to defend yourself when facing constant accusations of either being terrible at your job or being crooked as a referee, it’s also just not something you should bother with if you’re an NBA ref. Burner accounts seem like a good idea at the time, but if you only use the account to defend yourself, eventually it catches someone’s eye — especially because, as an NBA referee, no random people are going to be out there defending your honor that vigorously. This isn’t as big a deal as the Brian Colangelo burner account situation, but it’s still wild enough to make him one of the main characters on NBA Twitter right now.

Refereeing is a very difficult and thankless job, with the discourse about it as toxic as ever. Still, probably best to log off and do your best to ignore Twitter, because if you get found out like this, it’s only going to make it worse.