By Chris Lingebach

WASHINGTON — Capitals winger Tom Wilson says media attention surrounding pop star Selena Gomez liking his Instagram photos is overblown.

The New York Post’s Page Six first reported the two exchanged Instagram likes, only after, according to Page Six, they had been “introduced through Julianne Hough — who’s engaged to Caps center Brooks Laich.”

The veracity of the story, if not its newsworthiness, has come into question though as Laich denied he or his fiancée ever having introduced Wilson and Gomez. As Page Six also notes, Wilson is “quietly dating a fit, 22-year-old Canadian volleyball star.”

“Let me clarify one thing,” Laich told The Sports Junkies on 106.7 The Fan. “I have never met Selena and neither I, nor Julianne, have ever introduced them. So, to the person who first broke the story that we had, this is me calling you out. That is a completely fabricated rumor, and next time somebody goes to print something like that where they know it’s unverified or fabricated, I suggest they take a look in the mirror and say, ‘Can I do something more positive with my life?'”

“The decisions they make actually affect people’s lives and this is something completely unfounded and 100 percent untrue,” he continued. “That’s when I have a problem with it — it affects people’s lives and it’s something that’s so not true, and for somebody to just put it out there at their own whim, I think that’s an intrusion into people’s personal lives and it’s unwelcomed and also disrespectful.”

Wilson feels enlightened to the gossipy Hollywood lifestyle, if nothing else, after his involvement in the story from thousands of miles away.

“It’s being blown way out of proportion,” he told DC101. “It’s really no big deal. There’s nothing going on there. I want to focus on hockey; I don’t want to kind of buy into that rumor mill, but it’s pretty crazy to see a little bit of a glimpse into their lives, see how much stuff goes on. I mean a couple likes and a follow on Instagram gets a national story broken.”

And in the most bizarre twist, Gomez’s ex-boyfriend, Justin Bieber, has taken to Instagram in the past 24 hours to post a number of photos of himself playing and watching hockey, along with a throwback photo of he and Gomez.

Coincidence, probably. Hollywood is weird.

Follow @ChrisLingebach and @1067TheFanDC on Twitter.