Yep, got to a good selection of cities.... Unlike baseball where the 'stadium effects' determine how you build your team. Every rink is the same size in the NHL.. SO, location/rink isn't factor... it's more a just what the owners want.
As for the draft, I've got an idea. Have the draft just before the Regular season starts. You do your budgeting etc... then during a 10 exhibition game schedule the prospect list is generated. So the during the ex games, owners can scout and rank the propsects maybe make trades..... Then hold the draft and give owners 2 days to sign the picks OR assign them to ... Also you finalize your rosters etc. The on to the Reg season..
Just a thought. In HBD the Spring Training games are a pretty boring time (just trying to get guys playing time AND praying for no serious injuries). This way you can plan your draft, maybe trade UP OR trade a high 1st rounder for something you need..... Wheel & Deal for those 5 or days of exhibition games. Also, this will allow a newbie to get at least a feel for the game/ratings etc before the draft..