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DALLAS (CBS11) – A Dallas city council member wants to steal away the next NBA All-Star Game after the NBA expressed concerns over the current host site, North Carolina, and the state’s newly passed LGBT discrimination law.
“I’d love it. I’d absolutely love it. We will take whatever business, whatever we can get from those shoeless hillbillies,” said Philip Kingston, who represents District 14.
Kingston is referring to the law North Carolina just passed that stops transgender people from using public restrooms that do not match the sex on their birth certificates.
The law also excludes sexual orientation and gender identity from its anti-discrimination law.
The NBA said it is now concerned and does not know how it could impact the next NBA All-Star Game in Charlotte in 2017.
“It’d be an absolute slam dunk to take it away. Actually, what it would be is a naked steal in the back court,” said Kingston.
In an email, Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban said he could not comment about the situation.
Kingston said the city has taken great pains to cater to LGBT citizens. He said Dallas has to use that to market the city.
“Who wouldn’t want to have the business that comes from being an open and welcoming city,” said Kingston.
Outside the American Airlines Center during the Wednesday night Mavericks game, fans seemed to like the idea of hosting the game.
“That’d be awesome! So pumped, that’d be so sick,” said Hameem Bhatti and Hannah Ray.
Restaurant owners like Kim Forsythe at Sambuca said his business got a much needed boost during the last NBA All-Star Game in Arlington in 2010.
“We don’t discriminate it Dallas. No way, no how. Bring it on! We’re ready,” said Forsythe.
Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings and the Dallas Convention & Visitors Bureau did not respond to requests for comment.
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