Bill Spooner, a 22-year veteran NBA referee, is seeking over $75,000 in damages from the Associated Press over an in-game tweet by Jon Krawczynski, who covers the team. Krawczynski tweeted that Spooner promised Coach Kurt Rambis a make-up call, the Minneapolis-St. Paul Business Journal reports.
According to Spooner's suit, Rambis disagreed with a second-quarter foul called on his team in its 129-125 loss to the Houston Rockets on Jan. 24. Spooner told Rambis that he'd review the call at halftime and Rambis inquired as to how he should seek to get back the two points that the unfortunate call had cost his team. Spooner's suit claims he didn't reply, but Krawczynski tweeted:
Ref Bill Spooner told Rambis he’d “get it back” after a bad call. Then he made an even worse call on Rockets. That’s NBA officiating folks.
Spooner is also seeking retraction and unpublishing of the accusation that he deems defamatory.
"We believe all of the facts we reported from the game in question were accurate," Dave Tomlin, associate general counsel for the AP, said in a statement. A spokesman said the AP has not yet been served with a lawsuit.