Basketball fans are well catered for on the web: there are a surprising number of ways in which you can catch the game, nothing but a screen and an internet connection needed. Being fans of the game ourselves, Cloudwards.net has put together a few of the ways you can watch the NBA online.
First we’ll take a look at some of the most common ways in which you can watch the NBA from either the U.S. or abroad, before we go on to a few more … unconventional … ways in which you can stock up on watercooler talk. These last avenues will take you into piratical waters, so make sure you read up on torrenting as well as our selection of best VPN providers before doing so.
The easiest way to watch the NBA is to go through the organization’s homepage at, you guessed it, NBA.com. You can watch games either live as they happen or at any time during the season, it’s up to you. There is no archive available as far as we can see, so do note that it’s only the games of the season you’re subscribed to you can watch.
Subscriptions come in three flavors: there’s the “league pass,” which allows you to watch every game of the season for $75 per year, the “team choice” package if you just want to watch your team win or lose for $45 and the “game choice” bundle which lets you pick any eight games per month for $35. All subscriptions are available anywhere in the world, though there are some regional blackouts.
Taken altogether, all three subscriptions have their advantages, of course, but it could be that bundling up your NBA games with your regular TV subscription would be a better deal for you. We’ll give a quick overview here for cord cutters — people not using cable — as giving an overview of every cable subscription in the U.S. is beyond our ken.
One of the biggest providers right now is DirecTV, which you’ve probably already heard of as its brochures are likely coming into your mailbox like snow in a blizzard. It has to be said that for people looking to get a great many channels, DirecTV is a pretty good deal; the cheapest package that includes ESPN and TNT (and therefore the NBA) starts at $35.
If all you’re after is basketball, though, or you just want to be able to pay month-to-month, SlingTV is probably a better bet. It’ll set you back $25 at the cheapest and includes both ESPN and TNT, with less fluff that a similar plan with DirecTV gives you.
How to Watch the NBA for Free
Now, with the goody two-shoes catered for, let’s take a look at some of the other ways in which you can watch the NBA, only this time without spending a penny. Well, that’s not completely true: you’re going to have to spend a few bucks on a VPN as all the methods below are illegal and you’ll need to cover your tracks.
Though the chances of being caught — or, in the case of streaming, someone actually giving a damn — are minimal, it’s always better to be protected before going further. Also, Cloudwards.net takes no responsibility for imbalanced karma or awkward questions from Saint Peter.
A quick consultation of the great oracle (google, we mean google) coughs up quite a few NBA streams. Testing a few different ones got mixed results — streaming sites are more often than not traps laid by malware enthusiasts and other cybercriminals — but the two best ones we came up with were nba-stream.com and VIPBox. As we prefer the methods laid out below we can’t vouch for either, but both seem above board and reliable.
Watching the NBA with Kodi
As you may or may not know, Cloudwards.net is a big fan of Kodi and its versatility and flexibility (if you’re not one of the converted yet, take some time to read our Kodi guide). Though the best Kodi repositories are a bit hard to pin down, there is plenty of choice for NBA fans.
Most of the add-ons mentioned in our best Kodi add-ons for sports should do the trick, but we’re going to reserve special mention for SportsDevil and Bennu, which have sports content from all over the internet neatly bundled for your pleasure. Included are TNT and ESPN, so you’re almost guaranteed some serious NBA action.
Other NBA via Kodi options are NBA on Demand (through the Covenant repo) and NBA Full Games, which is found through Fusion. Both are excellent alternatives that should patch you straight through to what you’re looking for.
Torrenting NBA Games
Though torrenting sites are nebulous at best, there are several dedicated to posting NBA replays. These are obviously not live, but, hey, they’re free, right? Most of the common alternative torrent sites, however, do not carry sports games, so you’re going to have to use dedicated ones like those mentioned in this reddit thread.
Another option more or less in the same niche is to go through some of the best cloud torrent sites (some games will pop up there, though it’s hit and miss), or go through Usenet. There is very little on the internet that can’t be found in some way or another on this proto-internet, the downside of course being that it’s, y’know, Usenet.
Hopefully this selection of ways to watch the NBA online will help you catch your weekly (daily?) dose of hoop fever without too much fuss or money spent. Though of course going the legal route is always preferable — basketball stars need to eat, too — if you’re out of pocket or in a country were the legal route is made impossible, you have a few options open to you, still.
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Do you have a way of watching the game that we somehow missed? Do you have any tweaks you think we should know about? Let us know in the comments below. Thank you for reading and have fun watching the game.