Sports fans are spoiled for choice with the number of live games they can watch through various online streaming services. Now there is no need to sign up for an expensive, long-term cable contract to watch their favorite team in action. The biggest problem is often deciding which one of the many streaming services to sign up for.
YouTube TV is a streaming service that enables viewers to watch more than 70 live channels, which include entertainment, news, and sports programming. It is a great option for basketball fans to tune into action from the National Basketball Association (NBA) as it includes ABC, ESPN, FOX Sports, NBA TV, NBC Sports Network, and TNT in its regular channel lineup.
The streaming service is owned by YouTube, which is a subsidiary of Google — but it is separate from the popular video website. Instead, it provides a cable-like experience that enables viewers to watch live channels and on-demand content on their mobile device, computer, streaming device, or smart TV. It also provides access to add-ons from premium content providers like Acorn, Cinemax, Epix, FOX Soccer Plus, HBO Now, NBA League Pass, SHOWTIME, and STARZ.
A key feature of YouTube TV is its unlimited Cloud Digital Video Recorder feature, which enables subscribers to record as much content as they want and keep it for up to 9 months. This is ideal for NBA fans to record live games they may miss and watch them back at a later date. It also enables subscribers to watch the service on 3 simultaneous streams and create up to 6 separate profiles per account, each of which gets its own space to record content.
This article will provide an overview of how to watch the NBA on YouTube TV. For more information about YouTube TV, read our YouTube TV review. Also, find out more about the channels, packages, and pricing that YouTube TV offers. Or discover the free trials and deals that are currently available on YouTube TV. And find more information on where else to catch live games in our guide to the best sports streaming services.
YouTube TV plans and sports channels compared
Can I stream every NBA game on YouTube TV?
Nationally televised broadcasts vs. local market availability
Nationally televised broadcasts of the NBA are shared between ABC, ESPN, and TNT, which are all available to YouTube TV subscribers. Games that are broadcast by national networks are exclusive to these channels and will not be available via local market networks. These national networks will also be the place to watch NBA Playoff and NBA Finals games.
Most NBA games are broadcast live in local markets via regional sports networks. These are predominantly broadcast by FOX Sports or NBC Sports, which are available to YouTube TV subscribers. However, there are several exceptions to this, with seven NBA teams’ games being broadcast on channels that are not available on YouTube TV.
Streaming your favorite NBA team
YouTube TV enables fans of 23 out of the 30 NBA franchises to watch their favorite team in their local market. Brooklyn Nets games are broadcast on YES Network, Denver Nuggets games are exclusively aired on Altitude, Houston Rockets, Los Angeles Lakers, and Utah Jazz games are only available through AT&T Sports Net, LA Clippers games are carried by FOX Sports Prime Ticket, and New York Knicks games are only on MSG.
|Team and Local Network||YouTube TV|
|Atlanta HawksFOX Sports Southeast||✔|
|Boston CelticsNBC Sports Boston||✔|
|Brooklyn NetsYES Network|
|Charlotte HornetsFOX Sports Southeast||✔|
|Chicago BullsNBC Sports Chicago||✔|
|Cleveland CavaliersFOX Sports Ohio||✔|
|Dallas MavericksFOX Sports Southwest||✔|
|Detroit PistonsFOX Sports Detroit||✔|
|Golden State WarriorsNBC Sports Bay Area||✔|
|Houston RocketsAT&T SportsNet Southwest|
|Indiana PacersFOX Sports Indiana||✔|
|LA ClippersFOX Sports Prime Ticket|
|Los Angeles LakersSpectrum SportsNet|
|Memphis GrizzliesFOX Sports Southeast||✔|
|Miami HeatFOX Sports Sun||✔|
|Milwaukee BucksFOX Sports Wisconsin||✔|
|Minnesota TimberwolvesFOX Sports North||✔|
|New Orleans PelicansFOX Sports New Orleans||✔|
|New York KnicksMSG|
|Oklahoma City ThunderFOX Sports Oklahoma||✔|
|Orlando MagicFOX Sports Florida||✔|
|Philadelphia 76ersNBC Sports Philadelphia||✔|
|Phoenix SunsFOX Sports Arizona||✔|
|Portland Trail BlazersNBC Sports Northwest||✔|
|Sacramento KingsNBC Sports California||✔|
|San Antonio SpursFOX Sports Southwest||✔|
|Utah JazzAT&T SportsNet Rocky Mountain|
|Washington WizardsNBC Sports Washington||✔|
What about out-of-market broadcasts?
NBA fans who do not live in the local market of their favorite team can still catch nearly every game live through out-of-market broadcasts with NBA League Pass on YouTube TV. The NBA League Pass YouTube TV service is available for an additional $40/mo. Alternatively, users can sign up for the annual subscription for $119.99/yr. to watch all of a single team’s games throughout the entire NBA season. NBA fans looking for more live basketball can watch the games of every team throughout the season for $199.99/yr. Another option is to watch all games from every NBA team with an in-arena stream during commercial breaks for $249.99/yr.
The final cut
YouTube TV provides a strong service for NBA fans that encompasses both nationally broadcast games, local action, and out-of-market match-ups.
Crucially, YouTube TV provides access to FOX Sports and NBC Sports RSNs, which are home to the vast majority of NBA streams in local markets. It also includes ABC, ESPN, and TNT in its channel lineup, which are the three networks that share all nationally broadcast NBA games. On top of that, YouTube TV subscribers can sign up for NBA League Pass through the service, which unlocks access to live games of every team across the league.
YouTube TV subscribers can also catch NBA live games and stream other sports by using an antenna like HDHomeRun. This enables them to tune into local digital channels on their TV.
YouTube TV costs $64.99/mo., which is a little more expensive than similar streaming services such as fuboTV and Hulu + Live TV (both $54.99/mo.) However, the service does enable new customers to try it out before they commit to a subscription with a 7-day free trial.