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NBA Joins NFL In Warning Texas Over Proposed 'Bathroom Bill'

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AUSTIN (AP) - The NBA is warning Texas over a proposed "bathroom bill" targeting transgender people that is similar to a North Carolina law that prompted the league to move the All-Star Game out of that state.

The NBA on Friday joined the NFL in suggesting that Texas will be overlooked for future big events if lawmakers pass a bill requiring people to use bathrooms that correspond to the sex on their birth certificate.

NBA spokesman Mike Bass says an environment where people are treated "fairly and equally" weighs heavily when the league chooses host locations. Texas has three NBA teams and has hosted three All-Star Games since 2006.

Charlotte was originally supposed to host the All-Star Game on Sunday. But the NBA moved the game to New Orleans after North Carolina adopted its "bathroom bill" last year.

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott slammed the NFL for criticizing the bill on Thursday.

In an appearance on Fox News, the Republican said that if the league punishes Texas over the "bathroom bill," ''I might just pass a bill" requiring all players to stand and place their hands over their hearts during the National Anthem.

A spokesman later suggested Abbott was joking.

Days after a successful Super Bowl in Houston, an NFL spokesman said it could be "discriminatory" and might even cost Texas hosting future big games.

Abbott also said the NFL should stay out of politics.

Earlier this week, musicians Lada Gaga and Alicia Keys were among more than 140 artists and celebrities to condemn the bill. 

(© Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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