There is no better way to spend your free time than sitting back and watching your favourite sport, preferably surrounded by mountains of snacks and refreshments.
You simply can’t escape sport these days, as every news channel, social media platform, and panel show constantly pumps out the latest highlights from all over the world. Global sport has never been easier to follow, which has resulted in a growing contingent of fans who follow sports and teams from other countries. We’re all for following your passion, but this interest does cause an issue. What if your favourite sport is not readily available in your location?
It’s all well and good checking in on your team from time to time online, or maybe watching the highlights from last night’s game on YouTube, but this just isn’t going to be enough for the most dedicated of fans. This group will need to watch games live, which can be tricky if you’re based on the other side of the planet.
Whether you desperately want to follow the NBA, NFL, NHL, or some other three-letter acronym, there is a solution to your problem. No, we’re not going to suggest that you try and find some dodgy stream that throws even dodgier ads your way. Instead, you should consider investing in a VPN.
Why do you need a VPN to watch the NBA?
There is only one way to watch every single NBA game of the season, and it’s with the NBA International League Pass. Unfortunately, this service is geo-restricted due to broadcasting rights, meaning you can’t access it if you live in the U.S., Cuba, or some countries in the Middle East.
The only way to get around these geo-restrictions is with a VPN. These security services encrypt all of your data, protect your identity, and hide your real IP address. By connecting to server in a country with full access to the NBA International League Pass, you can trick the site into thinking you are based in a location that isn’t blocked. This is the same technique used by absolutely loads of VPN subscribers to access more libraries of streaming sites like Netflix.
It’s still worth considering a VPN if you live in a country with access to the NBA International League Pass. This is because you can find much cheaper subscription deals if you sign up from a server in another country. There are always new deals dropping, but at one point you could have saved 75% on an annual subscription from India. It’s quick and easy to switch your location to India with a VPN, meaning you could access the best deal in a matter of seconds.
It’s important to point out that you will always need a subscription to the NBA International League Pass if you want to watch every game. A VPN can bypass geo-restrictions and save you a lot of money on a subscription, but they do not grant you access to everything for free.
What are the most important features for streaming sport?
The world of VPNs can be a complicated and frankly overwhelming place to be if you don’t know what’s going on. This is where we can help. We’ve researched everything you need to know about VPNs, and highlighted a selection of features that actually matter when it comes to streaming sport:
Connection speed: If there is one thing that completely ruins a sport streaming session, it’s buffering. Every VPN is going to cause a drop in connection speed, but it shouldn’t result in lag or buffering. Make sure you select a VPN with consistently strong connection speeds so that you can watch the NBA without interruptions.
Number of connections: This feature isn’t the most important if you only ever use one device, but if you’re in a large household with loads of devices, it’s better to subscribe to a VPN with an unlimited number of multi-logins. This means you can connect an unlimited number of devices simultaneously with the same account, so everyone can watch their favourite sport at the same time. Not many VPNs offer unlimited connections, but most of the best services let you connect at least five devices simultaneously, which is probably enough for most people.
Server network: VPNs provide access to literally thousands of servers located all around the world, and it’s these servers that grant you access to things like the NBA International League Pass. It’s important to pick a VPN with a large and diverse selection of servers so that you can always find a reliable and speedy connection.
Bandwidth: The best VPNs do not place monthly caps on network bandwidth, but there are some cheap services that only let you download a certain amount of data. Obviously, you should avoid these services. You should only consider VPNs with unlimited bandwidth, so you can stream as much sport as you wish.
It’s important to take all of this into consideration when selecting a VPN for streaming any sort of sport from around the world. The best strategy is to think through these important features, and weigh them against your own set of personal priorities. Then you should have a clearer idea about what really matters to you.
Should you pay for a VPN?
Before we get into the best VPNs for watching the NBA, it’s worth tackling to most common question when it comes to VPNs. Should you pay for a VPN, or try a free service?
There are plenty of free VPNs out there that offer a decent set of features, but these almost always have limits on data, server network, and connection speed, so if you want to stream freely, we really wouldn’t recommend them.
The good news is that there are a lot of cheap plans on offer from the leading services, especially if you’re willing to commit to long contract. The cheapest monthly rates are reserved for the longest contracts, so if you find a VPN that ticks all of your boxes, it might be worth signing up for a lengthy plan.
What is the best VPN for watching the NBA?
There are a lot of VPNs that provide a user-friendly viewing experience for the NBA, but we know you’re only interested in the very best. That’s why we have lined up a selection of the best VPNs for streaming sport, including the best deals on popular services like ExpressVPN and CyberGhost VPN.
There should be something for everyone and every budget on this list, so all you need to do is consider the options we have highlighted, and pick the service that suits you best.
These are the best VPNs for watching the NBA in 2021.
Fast connection speeds • Strong encryption • The best at unlocking streaming sites • Decent server network
Probably the best VPN for streaming thanks to its fast connection speeds and effective unblocking of leading sites.
ExpressVPNExpressVPN is tough to beat on connection speed, meaning your stream shouldn’t get interrupted.
It’s one of the best for connection speeds, encryption, and server network. Plus, it’s probably the best service for streaming due to its ability to unblock just about every leading site.
It’s definitely not the cheapest VPN, but high-speed streaming of the NBA may make it worth the higher price tag.
Powerful encryption • Advanced security features • Diverse server network • Easy to use
There are cheaper options out there • NordVPN has experienced a data leak in the past
NordVPN shines when it comes to security, but it’s also pretty good at streaming sports from all over the world.
NordVPNNordVPN offers a bunch of advanced security features that safeguard your data and identity.
Users get access to a diverse network of servers, advanced security features, and powerful encryption. Plus, connection speeds are solid and it’s really easy to use.
If you are looking to stream the NBA and protect your data and identity, NordVPN is a solid choice.
Unlimited number of connections • Stylish design • Easy to use
Lacking some advanced security features
Surfshark is the best service for large households thanks to its unlimited number of mutli-logins.
SurfsharkSurfshark lets you connect an unlimited number of devices simultaneously, so everyone can stream at the same time.
Surfshark does stand out from the majority of leading services though, because it offers an unlimited number of simultaneous connections. This is great news for large households, especially if everyone is online at the same time.
Surfshark also offers decent speeds, a stylish app, and plenty of easy to use features that should appeal to everyone. It might be lacking is some advanced security features, but that shouldn’t bother anyone who simply wants to stream sport.
Connection speed can be poor
CyberGhost VPN has an attractive and easy to use app that makes it appealing for beginners.
CyberGhost VPNCyberGhost VPN’s interface is intuitive and attractive, making it a solid option for beginners.
CyberGhost VPN’s connection speeds can sometimes be a poor, but its sever network is large and diverse. This means that if you’re struggling for speed, you should be able to switch to something better in no time.
Massive server network • Connection speeds • Powerful encryption
No live chat support • Outdated design
One of the most powerful VPNs with lots of features that help with streaming.
Private Internet AccessWith a massive network of servers located all around the world, you should always be able to find a speedy connection with PIA.
We’re always on the lookout for things that make a VPN stand out from the crowd, and it’s easy with Private Internet Access. This service has an absolutely massive network of servers, so you should always be able to find a fast and reliable connection.
Private Internet Access looks a little dated, but if you can get past this, you’ll get one of the most powerful VPNs on the market.