Carrie Underwood Sparks CMA Awards Debate: Did She Wink at Eric Church or Miranda Lambert?

After Eric Church won Entertainer of the Year at the 2020 CMA Awards, fellow nominee Carrie Underwood was spotted winking at someone. The only question is: who?

By Elyse Dupre Nov 12, 2020 3:21 PMTags

Who knew one little wink could cause such a big debate?

In the blink of an eye (literally), Carrie Underwood had Twitter buzzing over a memorable moment at the 2020 CMA Awards on Wednesday, Nov. 11. Here's what happened: Eric Church, Luke Combs, Miranda Lambert, Keith Urban and Underwood were all nominated for Entertainer of the Year. Hosts Reba McEntire and Darius Rucker then named Church the winner.

While Underwood and her fellow nominees smiled and gave Church a standing ovation upon hearing the news, fans couldn't help but notice she also gave a small wink. But who was it directed to, and what did it mean?

Some thought the gesture was aimed at Church. "Eric Church emotional while winning EOTY and Carrie giving him the tearful wink is such a loaded, fascinating TV moment," one viewer tweeted. "Congrats to Chief!" 

Others, however, weren't convinced. "You think she was winking at him?" asked another. "Still debating."

Stars Arrive at the 2020 CMA Awards

One follower guessed Underwood was winking at a person off-camera. "I think she was winking to someone off to the side who gave her a look like 'you were robbed' and her wink back was like 'it's ok, I'm ok' and she did her best to hold herself together despite the disappointment," the fan tweeted. "Looked like a sad wink to me, IMO."

Another wondered if it was a symbol of girl power and unity directed at Lambert. As a social media user put it, "And I really think Carrie's wink was towards Miranda saying 'it's fine, we're both good.'"

Or perhaps the wink was for McEntire. As one follower assumed, "I think it was to Miranda or possibly Reba as she was leaving the stage."

Still, some pondered if it was just Underwood's way of saying congratulations. "Could be," a follower wrote in response to the last theory. "Or to Eric as a 'If not me than you' because he blew a kiss to her at the end of his speech as he walked off stage."


There was also the possibility the wink was meant for her husband Mike Fisher. "Real talk though, who was it to?" a Twitter user wrote. "Miranda? Eric? Mike?"

Or for her fans. "She's saying 'I'm going to get this award one of these days' 'don't you worry my carebears,'" assumed another. "'I going to come back stronger then [sic] ever before and then we will win Entertainer at the CMA.'"

Whatever the answer, viewers want to know the truth. "I want to know what that wink was for so badly!" one fan tweeted. "I know she has something up her sleeve."

Underwood has yet to publicly respond to the debate. So for now, it looks like the case of the mysterious wink remains unsolved.

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