The controversial “bathroom bill” in the Texas Legislature has a chance to cross over into the world of the NHL if passed later this month. The bill, which requires people to use the bathroom corresponding to the gender listed on their birth certificate in schools and public buildings, is viewed by many as homophobic and discriminatory.
In the event it’s passed into law, the NHL could decide to pull the 2018 Entry Draft from American Airlines Arena in Dallas.
We strongly oppose the bill in its original form. We hope and expect that bill in that form will not be passed into law. We would obviously have to reassess the situation in the event that happens. –Bill Daly, NHL Deputy Commissioner
If the bill is passed, and the NHL Draft is forced out of Dallas, Vegas would likely be a leading candidate as its replacement.
Every year for the past nine years the NHL has held the annual Awards show in Vegas, including this past year which coincided with the Expansion Draft. That event usually occurs two days prior to the first round of the Entry Draft.
This is complete speculation, but Vegas makes perfect sense not just as a replacement for the NHL Draft in the event it needs to be pulled from Dallas this year, but for every year in the future. Having the two events back to back in the same location will increase coverage nationally and internationally of both events and likely bring in more revenue. Plus, there’s simply no easier place to hold an event like the draft than Vegas when it comes to lodging, transportation, and logistics.
I’m not saying it’s going to happen this year, in fact, I’m rooting against it, cause that bathroom bill is a joke, but eventually, the NHL Draft is going to come to Vegas, and when it does, it’s never going to leave.