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First call: ‘(Expletive) this league,’ Backstrom yells after Game 4 loss | TribLIVE.com
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First call: ‘(Expletive) this league,’ Backstrom yells after Game 4 loss

Tim Benz
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The Capitals' Nicklas Backstrom talks with Evgeny Kuznetsov at PPG Paints Arena.

In today’s “First Call,” the Capitals are getting testy, keeping an eye on the other Stanley Cup playoff series, another offer for Mike Tomlin’s son and Antonio Brown, the mentor.

Getting testy?

It appears the suspension of Tom Wilson is eating at the Capitals.

I imagine a Penguin or two had a reaction like that after Patric Hornqvist’s overturned goal, Brett Connolly’s uncalled interference and Wilson’s ignored hit to the head of Brian Dumoulin during Game 2.

The Capitals are disputing that reaction from Backstrom. But ESPN’s Greg Wyshynski stands by it.

The Trib’s own Rob Rossi is corroborating the story.

By the way, Penguins fans were apparently having fun at Wilson’s expense.


Who’s next?

As the Penguins and Capitals rage on against one another, the Bruins and Lightning are set to resume their series in Boston for Game 4. The Lightning currently have a 2-1 edge.

The Bruins are considering some lineup changes and are dealing with a few injuries.

Brad Marchand and Jake Debrusk sat out practice Friday, but it is believed they’ll be able to play .

Ryan Donato may make his Stanley Cup playoff debut.


Preds knuckle up

The Penguins aren’t the only defending conference champion to rally in their current series. The Predators beat the Jets last night to tie their best of seven Western Conference semifinal at 2-2.

PK Subban’s game-winning goal was supported by Scott Hartman. Pekka Renne had 32 saves. Game 5 is in Nashville on Saturday.


Following father’s footsteps

Mike Tomlin’s son, Dino, got a football scholarship offer from his father’s alma mater.

William & Mary is just the latest institution to make an offer to Tomlin’s older son . Other schools interested in the Shadyside prospect appear to include Iowa State, Army, Princeton, and a few others.

Tomlin’s younger son Mason is also playing football at Shadyside.


Conflict of interest?!

Antonio Brown is playing the role of mentor to a rookie wide receiver.

No, not James Washington. At least not yet. Rather it’s a Cleveland Browns prospect, Antonio Callaway.

The Florida product had a diluted drug test sample at the combine. He was alleged to use stolen credit card data and got himself suspended in 2017. He also faced a sexual assault investigation in 2016, but was cleared.

Both pass-catchers are from Miami. Brown was even in attendance at the now rival receiver’s draft party.

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