Sabres talking with NHL to keep draft combine in Buffalo

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Buffalo’s deal to host the annual NHL Scouting Combine is up after this year, but plans are already in the works to come back next June.

“Right now we’re talking with Buffalo for 2017,” Dan Marr, the director of NHL Central Scouting, told the Buffalo News. “A couple other NHL cities have expressed interest, but the facilities here all under one roof, it’s a very nice fit.”

Buffalo won the rights to the combine back in 2014, which was a pretty significant shift. Prior to that, the combine was always held in Toronto — but the problem was the venue had no on-ice testing, and not much room for fans to show up and attend.

Over the last two years, Buffalo’s HarborCenter layout has proven to be much more conducive for such a large-scale event.

It’s unclear what other NHL cities are in the mix to host in ’17. It should be noted that Buffalo’s original proposal was to host the combine for three years, not just two — so the groundwork had already been laid to go back.

This year’s entry draft will be in Buffalo, from June 24-25.