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2016 NHL Draft to be hosted by Buffalo Sabres

The 2016 NHL Draft will be the third to be held in Buffalo.

Bruce Bennett

Add another premier hockey event to the calendar in the City of Buffalo. NHL commissioner Gary Bettman announced Monday that the Buffalo Sabres and First Niagara Center will host the 2016 NHL Draft. It will take place on June 24 and 25.

The announcement comes after a plethora of big time hockey events have already come to the city. The World Junior Hockey Championship was played in Buffalo in 2010-11, while USA Hockey's All American Prospects Game was played there in September. The city will host the 2015 and 2016 NHL Draft Scouting Combine and hosted the first NHL Winter Classic back in 2008.

By the time the 2016 draft rolls around, a new hockey-themed development called HARBORCenter, which sits across from First Niagara Center, will be complete. It will feature a hotel, two hockey rinks, parking and retail space.

Buffalo has hosted the NHL Draft twice previously, in 1998 and 1991. Vincent Lecavalier was the first overall selection in 1998, and Eric Lindros went No. 1 overall in '91 at the old Memorial Auditorium.

The 2014 NHL Draft was held in Philadelphia, and the 2015 NHL Draft will be hosted by the Florida Panthers.