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Sports

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Where to Watch the Best Live Sports and Sports Programming

Not too long ago, a cable TV subscription was your best bet to gaining regular access to high-quality sports programming. While national channels like CBS, FOX, ABC, and NBC could be counted on to carry some sporting events, if you wanted variety and consistency, you needed a cable package with at least ESPN. The options have now expanded with the advent of streaming services. Sports fans can watch everything from MLB games and college sports to the WNBA and NFL games, the FIFA World Cup and Formula 1 racing all in one weekend on the same streaming device. If you’re a sports fan, you probably already know about some of the more popular sports streaming services, but do you know about all of them? Here’s a comprehensive list of the best streaming services — that are 100% legal — for on-demand and live sporting events, as well as add-ons, and what you can expect to find to watch on each one.

Amazon Prime Video

While not exactly known as a sports streaming powerhouse, Amazon Prime Video does have some live sports programming that, for the already subscribed or the WNBA fan, are pretty great. What does it offer?

Subscribers to Amazon Prime Video will find live coverage of WNBA games, Thursday Night Football, LaLiga TV, MLB.TV, and some Yankees games for viewers in New York. In addition, subscribers can add other sports channels or streaming services, such as NBA League Pass, Paramount+, and/or PGA Tour Live.

DAZN

Are you a boxing fan? DAZN is a streaming service with a focus on boxing and other types of professional fighting. Subscribers gain access to on-demand, live, and archived fights. Currently, DAZN has rights to Golden Boy Promotions, Matchroom Boxing USA, and other fight promoters.

Subscriptions cost $19.99/month or $149.99/year.

DirecTV Stream

DirecTV Stream’s live sports offerings include everything from ESPN, ESPN2, and FS1 to the Tennis Channel and NBA TV. It offers four different pricing tiers that range from 65+ channels to 140+ channels. To get the most sports from your DirecTV Stream subscription, you’ll want to choose at least the second tier, called “Choice”. It includes 90+ TV channels, local channels, 45,000 on-demand titles, plus ESPN, the MLB Network, The Big Ten Network, The Tennis Channel, and more.

ESPN+

ESPN+, ESPN’s streaming app, can be subscribed to alone or it can be bundled along with Disney+ and Hulu. As one of the least expensive options on this list of live sports streaming services, it’s a great choice for sports fans who want to be able to stream sports for less than $7/month.

What do you get with ESPN+? In addition to live sports programming across a wide variety of sports, including basketball, soccer, UFC, golf, and baseball, subscribers also have access to ESPN’s entire 30 for 30 library and popular sports talk and analysis programming.

How much is ESPN+? An ESPN+ subscription is just $6.99/month, or just $69.99/year. It can also be bundled with Disney+ and Hulu for just $13.99/month.

fuboTV

fuboTV bills itself as the world’s only sports-focused streaming service. With over 30,000 live sports events streamed from the platform each year, it’s easily one of the most comprehensive platforms for the live sports fanatic. Its lowest tier starts at $64.99/month, and if you want NBA TV, NFL Redzone, the MLB Network, the NHL Network, and other specialty add-ons, you’ll have to pay extra.

fuboTV’s platform offerings also include TV channels like SyFy, the Game Show Network, CMT, BET, AMC, the NBA League Pass, ESPNU, MTV, Fox News, and scores of other offerings for a well-rounded streaming experience. fuboTV also comes with DVR and cloud storage, and right now, you can try fubo out risk-free for a 7-day free trial.

Hulu + Live TV

Hulu + Live TV is a live TV streaming service that offers over 75 live and on-demand sports channels, including ESPN, the Golf Channel, the SEC Network, and more. While not every game is available in every region — yes, there are blackouts even in the streaming universe — the offerings are still pretty robust. One particularly nice benefit is that you can select your favorite teams, leagues, or sport, and Hulu will customize and personalize recommendations for you.

Hulu + Live TV also comes with unlimited DVR and access to two separate live streams at once. Additionally, subscribers get access to Hulu’s vast streaming library, so you can binge Golden Girls, college basketball, Rick and Morty, and hockey. Hulu + Live TV costs $68.99/month, or you can get it bundled with Disney+ and ESPN+ for just a bit more and expand your sports package and movie and television package considerably:

  • Hulu + Live TV, plus Disney+ and ESPN+ is $69.99/month
  • Hulu + Live TV (no ads), plus Disney+ and ESPN+ is $75.99/month

Paramount Plus

Paramount+, a CBS streaming service, has every CBS sports live event and more. While it offers a wide variety of sports, teams, and leagues, soccer fans will especially enjoy the Paramount+ experience. From the Champions League to the Women’s Asian Cup to World Cup qualifying games, it’s the perfect streaming service for soccer lovers and international sports fans, in general.

In addition, Paramount Plus streams other popular channels, including PGA Tour, Starz, Showtime, and more, and it all costs just $4.99/month. For an ad-free subscription the price is just $9.99/month or $99.99/year.

Peacock TV

Peacock TV is a popular free streaming service, and even some of its sports programming is also free. However, to access any of its live sports, you’ll need to upgrade to Premium. Once you do? There’s a lot to like — especially for the low price of just $4.99/month. Rugby, golf, Premier League, WWE, horse racing, cycling, tennis, Sunday night football — with a premium Peacock subscription, a wide variety of live sporting events are available, as well as popular television shows, documentaries, and movies.

One thing to note, a subscription to Peacock Premium still includes ads. If you’d like access to all your favorite sports minus any of the ads, you’ll need to upgrade to Premium Plus, which is just $9.99/month.

Sling TV

Sling TV offers sports coverage in a variety of different tiers. At the lowest tier, subscribers can choose to get ESPN and TNT with Sling Orange, or they can get the NBC Sports Network, FOX, and FS1 with Sling Blue. The two can be combined, which will not only double the offerings, but will also include add-ons like NBA TV, the MLB Network, the NHL Network, and others. For fans of live NBA, MLB, college sports, and NHL games, it’s a hard package to beat — especially at the price. Right now, the Orange and Blue Sling combo is just $50/month.

Sling TV also provides other non-sports programming, too, including popular TV shows and blockbuster movies.

YouTube TV

Want a traditional cable TV sports watching experience without cable TV? YouTube TV delivers the most cable TV-like programming for streamers looking to watch sports. With access to the four largest local and national networks — NBC, ABC, CBS, and Fox — plus other sports-heavy networks like TNT, YouTube TV provides a well-rounded live game experience for fans of everything from college football to tennis and golf. For $64.99/month, YouTube TV subscribers can access over 85 channels of live programming that includes the SEC Network, the ACC Network, ESPN, the Big Ten Network, and non-sports channels like Comedy Central, PBS, and Nickelodeon. There’s no contract, and a subscription includes unlimited DVR and three separate simultaneous streams.

How to Watch Live Sports Streaming Services

Most streaming platforms and streaming apps listed here can be watched on any streaming device that can connect to WiFi or a modem. However, it’s best to always check with the streaming service. Devices you can use to stream your favorite sports channels and games include:

  • Mobile phones (Android and iOS)
  • Tablets
  • Smart TVs
  • Smart home hubs
  • Laptops
  • Desktop computers
  • Televisions and monitors compatible with streaming sticks like Roku
  • and more

Whether you just need it during the NCAA basketball playoffs or you don’t want to miss a single major sports event throughout the year, it’s never been easier to find the live games you want online. From the Olympics to NASCAR to small college football games and everything in between, stream the live sports you love with or without a cable TV subscription.

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