I have judged some events that had Brothers in them just for the fact that I had a chance to meet some Brothers. I haven't been there the night before, but have shown up early to mingle some before being sworn in. I think that even if a judge was to hang out with one or two teams exclusively the night before it's no big deal. They have that right. I do think that cooking any item should be a big NO NO. Even if it's a Fattie, ABT, Prime Rib, etc. You could possibly show technique or method that could be used to gain an edge or advantage over other teams. You may eat, drink and have fun, but should not be behind the prep area or cooking area for any extended periods of time. There again to be in these areas you may give the appearance of helping out if you linger too long.
As I understand the original statement by Phil I don't think anything could have been taken as wrong until he started cooking in the teams area. I can see where someone might say on Saturday that, hey I saw that judge cooking with a team last night. That would bring about questions.
I think that it all comes down to if you visit with a team, even if it's with just one team, stay out front with the rest of the visitors, which is what you are, and don't spend any excessive time in the prep or cooking area.
That's just my $.02.
Proud member of the MOFO chapter.
Rusting and corroding Gas Grill