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Out-of-Market NBA: Best Ways to Watch Every Basketball Match – Top Live Streams

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Like with many sports leagues in the US, it can be hard to see all the live NBA games that you want. The distinctions between and in- and out-of-market games and blackout restrictions can be aggravating. Read on to learn your options.

In a hurry? The easiest way to watch out-of-market games is with NBA League Pass, which you can get through the following services:

  • Fubo: The best streaming service for international sports also provides 150+ well-selected channels. Fubo allows you to try out its service with a free trial.
  • DIRECTV STREAM: Get a great channel lineup with the best selection of RSNs in the industry. A 5-day free trial is now available for DIRECTV STREAM.
  • Sling TV: This low-cost service allows you to select just the channel lineup you want. Save 50% on your first month of Sling TV.

If you can’t watch your favorite sports because of your location, get ExpressVPN to access the content you deserve.

Unfortunately, we don’t know a streaming service in that covers this sport. But if you’ve already paid for the right service, and just can’t watch because of your location, there is an easy way to get the content you deserve. You need a VPN, like one of the following.

  1. ExpressVPN: Known as “The VPN that just works,” it combines remarkable ease of use with with state-of-the-art power, speed, security, and privacy. Get three extra free months when you sign up for a year. Unleash your streaming with this top-rated VPN.
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  1. Hotspot Shield: Connect to servers in 80+ different countries and 25+ US cities. HotSpot Shield features extremely fast servers and connections and is specially tuned for use with streaming services. And you can try it risk-free with a 7-day free trial and a 45-day money-back guarantee!
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  1. CyberGhost: Great low-cost service with ultra-fast servers in 90+ countries for smooth live sports streaming. It also provides great security and privacy. See if it’s right for you with a free 24-hour trial and test it out with a 45-day money-back guarantee.
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If you’re overwhelmed and not sure where to begin, you’ll find all the answers in our full VPN guide.

Out-of-Market Games

There is a lot of jargon that has been created to describe the strange way that many sports are broadcast in the United States. Two of the most important are out-of-market and in-market.

In-market games are those that involve your local team. If you live in Portland, Oregon, any matchup that involves the Trail Blazers is in-market. And any matchup that does not involve them is out-of-market.

To watch most in-market games, you need access to the regional sports network (RSN) that covers your local team. In the case of the Trail Blazers, that’s Root Sports Northwest.

NBA League Pass was created to allow basketball fans to watch out-of-market games. It is like the anti-RSN. So to continue our example, those in Portland would be able to watch all games except for those that involve the Trail Blazers.

Out-of-Market NBA Games Options

There are various ways to watch out-of-market NBA games of varying degrees of cost and power.

National Games

Most NBA fans don’t need to even think about out-of-market games because the NBA has done a great job of providing nationally broadcast games. This year, 276 NBA regular season games will be broadcast on ABC (18), ESPN (83), NBA TV (107), or TNT (68). All of the play-in and playoff games will also appear on those channels.

The following streaming services offer all those channels:

NBA League Pass

Most of the major sports leagues provide out-of-market packages. There are NFL Sunday Ticket and MLB.TV, for example. And the NHL and MLS use ESPN+ for this purpose.

Similarly, the standard way to watch out-of-market NBA games is to sign-up for NBA League Pass. You can get it directly from the league and watch either on the NBA app or through NBA.com.

There are three NBA League Pass subscription types. First, is the standard package, which you can get for $99.99/yr or $14.99/mo. This includes out-of-market games with commercials on a single device.

Next, you can get NBA Team Pass for $89.99/yr, if you are really only interested in the games of your favorite team and don’t care about the rest. But it limits you to the games of a single team for not much cost savings.

Finally, you can get League Pass Premium for $129.99/yr or $19.99/mo. This package adds NBA TV, removes commercials, and allows you to stream on up to 2 devices at once.

All of these packages remove blackout restrictions on nationally televised games three hours after the game airs. So you can watch any game on-demand after that time. If you don’t mind delayed telecasts, League Pass is a complete viewing solution. The problem is with locally blacked-out games, which don’t become available for three days.

Given you will also need the other channels, most people get NBA League Pass through a live TV streaming service. All three we discussed above allow you to add it: Sling TV, DIRECTV STREAM, and YouTube TV.

FuboTV also provides NBA League Pass as an add-on for $14.99/mo.


VPNs are powerful tools that are essential for cord-cutters. They won’t allow you to watch games you don’t have the rights to. But under circumstances where geotargeting is blocking you from watching games, they can work miracles.

But again: they don’t provide content. They only allow you to get to content that you have already paid for.

Unblock Your Favorite Events & Teams With a VPN

If you can’t watch your favorite events or teams because of your location, a VPN will allow you to get the access you are entitled to, plus extra security and unequaled privacy. Check out our VPN Guide for everything you need to know, including our top pick ExpressVPN.

Get ExpressVPN Today

Other brands worth checking out include Hotspot Shield and CyberGhost.

Social Solutions for Watching Out-of-Market NBA Games

We list this one last but it might well be your first option: reach out to friends, family, and co-workers. Most people enjoy watching live sports with a group and are glad to share their services.

A related prospect is the now ubiquitous sports bar. These establishments normally air multiple games at the same time. And more recently, you can even find non-drinking establishments that cater to sports fan, although they are still rare.

NBA League Pass Streaming Devices

There is some variability in terms of device support for the various services. But they all support the most popular devices: Amazon Fire TV/Firestick, Android mobile, Apple TV, Chromecast, iOS (iPhone, iPad), Roku, and Samsung smart TVs.

Wrapping Up

The NBA makes it relatively easy to be a fan whether your favorite team lives close by or far away. Sling TV provides an inexpensive way to follow the league. But if you want it all, we recommend DIRECTV STREAM.


Can I watch out-of-market NBA Games with Hulu + Live TV?

Hulu + Live TV offers ABC, ESPN, and TNT in its base package for $69.99/mo. It also offers the NBC Sports RSNs to subscribers in the local market of the Golden State Warriors, Boston Celtics, Sacramento Kings, Chicago Bulls, Philadelphia 76ers, and Washington Wizards. But it doesn’t offer NBA TV or NBA League Pass. You could, however, get them independently.

How do I watch specific NBA teams?

We’ve created individual viewer’s guides for each NBA team:

Boston CelticsGolden State WarriorsChicago BullsDallas MavericksAtlanta HawksDenver Nuggets
Brooklyn NetsLos Angeles ClippersCleveland CavaliersHouston RocketsCharlotte HornetsMinnesota Timberwolves
New York KnicksLos Angeles LakersDetroit PistonsMemphis GrizzliesMiami HeatOklahoma City Thunder
Philadelphia 76ersPhoenix SunsIndiana PacersNew Orleans PelicansOrlando MagicPortland Trail Blazers
Toronto RaptorsSacramento KingsMilwaukee BucksSan Antonio SpursWashington WizardsUtah Jazz

Portland Trail Blazers vs Dallas Mavericks by Danny Bollinger under CC BY 2.0.

Page Updates

  1. Added links to streaming services. Updated some section headings. Changes to some of the sections. Various content updates.

Frank Moraes
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