Bally Sports is the largest collection of regional sports networks (RSNs) in the US. They are essential for local MLB, NBA, and NHL fans. But it can be confusing to understand what’s available and where it’s offered. We’ve done all the work for you. Read on for all the details!
In a hurry? Only two streaming services offer the Bally Sports channels, but they are great ones:
- Fubo: Get over 150 channels including a great selection of RSNs starting at $85.98/mo. Fubo allows you to try out its service with a free trial.
- DIRECTV STREAM: Sets you up with every regional channel in your area and 100+ others for $99.99/mo. A 5-day free trial is now available for DIRECTV STREAM.
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Table Of Contents
Regional Sports Networks
Regional Sports Networks (RSNs) are an odd relic of the history of sports and TV. They are local channels that air most of the games of Major League Baseball (MLB), National Basketball Association (NBA), and National Hockey League (NHL).
For example, if you live in Oklahoma City, the only way to watch all the Thunder games is to sign-up with Bally Sports Oklahoma. You can get a subscription to NBA League Pass, but the Thunder games will be blacked out for you. That’s also generally true of games that air on national channels.
If this seems crazy, that’s because it is! Just the same, RSNs provide great value to local sports fans. And it isn’t just professional sports. They also show games from local college and even high school teams.
The bottom line is simple: if you want to watch a lot of games played by your local professional sports teams, you need your local RSNs. And in most areas, that means Bally Sports.
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Streaming Bally Sports
You have two primary options for streaming Bally Sports — especially if you are interested in MLB.
Fubo for Bally Sports
Fubo is a sports-first streaming service with 130+ channels in its base plan including all the local affiliates (ABC, CBS, etc) and a broad selection of general “cable” channels. But of special note are the sports channels it offers including CBS Sports Network (CBSSN), ESPN, ESPN2, FS1, FS2, and a couple dozen channels from beIN Sports and TUDN.
It also provides all the Bally Sports channels throughout the nation. In fact, it offers all RSNs except for a couple in Los Angeles and New York. The cost is $85.98/mo if you get one RSN and $88.98/mo if you get two or more.
Additionally, Fubo comes with 1,000 hours of permanent cloud DVR storage and the ability to stream on up to 10 devices at once.
See our Fubo review for details.
DIRECTV STREAM Provides Bally Sports
The second option is to get DIRECTV STREAM. It provides access to all the Bally Sports channels in addition to all the others. For example, Houston residents will get Bally Sports Southwest and Bally Sports Oklahoma as well as Space City Home Network (formerly AT&T SportsNet Southwest).
To get access to these RSNs, you must sign-up for the Choice plan for $108.99/mo. This includes 100+ other TV channels including 14 live sports channels: ACCN, B1G, ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNews, ESPNU, FS1, Golf Channel, MLB Network, MotorTrend, NBA TV, SECN, Tennis Channel, and TVG.
DIRECTV STREAM also provides great features. You get an unlimited cloud DVR with a 9-month storage length. And you can stream on as many devices as you like, so it’s great for a large household.
For more information, see our DIRECTV STREAM review.
Bally Sports App
You can also use the Bally Sports app directly. But in order to use it, you must sign in with your TV provider credentials for a subscription that grants you access. These can be provided from a number of services including:
- AT&T U-verse
- DIRECTV STREAM
The Bally Sports app is available for most devices including Amazon Fire TV, Android mobile, Android TV, Apple TV, Chromecast, iOS (iPhone/iPad), Roku, Web browsers, and Xbox One gaming systems.
Note: At this point, Bally Sports+ has secured rights for the games of all covered NBA and NHL teams. But it has not secured rights to most MLB team games. Make sure that your teams will be available before signing up. Or go with Fubo.
In mid-2022, Bally Sports released its own direct-to-consumer streaming service. It is called Bally Sports+ (or Bally Sports Plus) and costs $19.99/mo or $189.99/yr. With it, you can stream the included channels through the Bally Sports app or on the website, BallySports.com. Currently, it is limited to subscribers in five locations: Detroit, Kansas City, Miami, Milwaukee, and Tampa Bay.
According to the company, all 19 Bally Sports channels will be included with Bally Sports+ as of September 26th — in time for the start of the MLB regular season. (Black Friday details)
Is Bally Sports+ Worth It?
There are definitely situations where Bally Sports+ is worth subscribing to. The best subscriber for Bally Sports+ is one in an area that only offers the Bally Sports channels and no other RSNs. But even there, it gives subscribers more choices and not any kind of savings. At its current price, it isn’t a good deal to most subscribers unless they just really hate DIRECTV STREAM.
There are a couple of things to keep in mind. Bally Sports+ is limited to its own RSNs. So viewers in Los Angeles would get Bally Sports SoCal and Bally Sports West but not Spectrum SportsNet or SportsNet LA. The only solution to such viewers is to go with DIRECTV STREAM.
You also wouldn’t get any national channels like ESPN. This issue can be solved by combining Bally Sports+ with Sling TV and an antenna. But to get the full extent of sports programming with ESPN, FS1, and USA Network, you’d need the Orange + Blue plan. That would make your total cost shoot up to $69.99/mo. If you want MLB Network and NBA TV, you need the Sports Plus add-on for $15/mo more. If you want CBS, you need Paramount+ for $4.99/mo more.
That’s $89.98/mo. You’d probably be better off with the DIRECTV STREAM Choice plan for $108.99/mo where you’d have it all in one place with unlimited DVR storage and simultaneous screens.
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Bally Sports Channels
There are 19 Bally Sports Channels. The vast majority provide access to the local MLB, NBA, and NHL teams.
The following table includes links to our pages as well as the teams of the 4 leagues that are covered. Note that there is crossover. There are many areas where you will receive more than one RSN.
Alternatively, not all teams are included in all regions. For example, Bally Sports Southwest is a very large region. Subscribers in San Antonio do not get access to Mavericks games and Dallas subscribers do not get Spurs games.
See our pages for the details about this.
- Bally Sports Arizona
- Bally Sports Detroit
- Bally Sports Florida
- Bally Sports Great Lakes
- Cleveland Guardians (MLB)
- Bally Sports Indiana
- Indiana Pacers (NBA)
- Bally Sports Kansas City
- Kansas City Royals (MLB)
- Bally Sports Midwest
- Bally Sports New Orleans
- New Orleans Pelicans (NBA)
- Bally Sports North
- Bally Sports Ohio
- Bally Sports Oklahoma
- Oklahoma City Thunder (NBA)
- Bally Sports San Diego
- Bally Sports SoCal
- Bally Sports South
- Bally Sports Southeast
- Bally Sports Southwest
- Bally Sports Sun
- Bally Sports West
- Bally Sports Wisconsin
Bally Sports provides the most RSNs but there are a number of other important RSNs.
The other major provider is NBC Sports. They offer the following:
Additionally, NBC Sports Washington was sold to Monumental Sports & Entertainment. It is now:
Because of the non-RSN channels offered and the lower price ($69.99/mo), we recommend Hulu + Live TV for those who want NBC Sports RSNs.
All of the following RSNs are available from DIRECTV STREAM. In addition, Fubo provides access to those from AT&T, Marquee, MSG, NESN, and Root. SportsNet New York is available from Fubo and Hulu + Live TV.
- Altitude Sports
AT&T SportsNet Rocky Mountain
- Marquee Sports Network
- Chicago Cubs (MLB)
- Root Sports Northwest
- Space City Home Network
- Spectrum SportsNet
- Los Angeles Lakers (NBA)
- Spectrum SportsNet LA
- Los Angeles Dodgers (MLB)
- SportsNet New York
- New York Mets (MLB)
- SportsNet Pittsburgh
- YES Network
Bally Sports is a collection of 19 RSNs. They are owned by Sinclair Broadcast Group via Diamond Sports Group. The name was licensed from Bally’s Corporation. Diamond acquired these channels when the US DOJ forced Fox Sports to sell them as a condition of being acquired by Disney.
There were originally 21 Fox Sports RSNs. But Fox Sports Carolinas and Fox Sports Tennessee were both shutdown. Tennessee’s coverage of the Grizzlies was moved to Bally Sports Southeast and the Predators coverage was moved to Bally Sports South. Similarly, Carolinas’ coverage of the Hornets moved to Bally Sports Southeast and Hurricanes coverage went to Bally Sports South.
Through 2019, Fubo, Hulu + Live TV, DIRECTV STREAM, and YouTube TV all provided streaming access to these channels. But in 2020, Fubo, Hulu, and YouTube dropped them. This led to DIRECTV STREAM being the only live TV streaming service to offer Bally Sports for a couple of years.
But in early 2023, Fubo added Bally Sports, so there are now two options.
Bally Sports Programming
The primary focus of each Bally Sports channel is to air live games of their affiliated MLB, NBA, and NHL teams. In fact, these are generally the only way for local fans to watch these games. For example, a Twins fan in Minneapolis can see most games only via Bally Sports North. (The exceptions are the small number of games that are shown exclusively on national channels like ESPN or streaming services like Apple TV+.)
College football also shows up on Bally Sports channels. And notable high school athletic events like the Texas High School Football Championships also appear on Bally Sports.
Finally, Bally Sports offers a collection of other sporting events like poker and fishing.
One thing that Bally Sports does not offer is NFL games. This is true of all RSNs. NFL games are broadcast on national channels. However, Bally Sports channels do offer some programming for NFL fans. They just don’t offer the games themselves.
Fubo is our top choice for Bally Sports. Fubo allows you to try out its service with a free trial.
Will Diamond Sports Group’s bankruptcy affect broadcasts?
The owner of the Bally Sports channels, Diamond Sports Group, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy on March 14, 2023. Their stated intent is to restructure and emerge as a “stronger company.” Whether that happens or not, the company currently has “$425 million of cash on hand to fund its business and restructuring.” So nothing should change for Bally Sports viewers for at least the current season — and potentially indefinitely.
Does Bally Sports show MLS games?
Through 2022, Bally Sports channels were the local broadcasters for many MLS teams. That all changed in 2023, when Major League Soccer took back control of its broadcasting rights. Now you can watch all the teams with MLS Season Pass. It costs $14.99/mo and has no blackout restrictions. Fans will probably want to get the yearly plan for $99.99.
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