How to Watch Sports Without Cable

How to Watch Sports Without Cable

If you’re a sports fan weighing the pros and cons of cable vs. streaming, it’s important to know you’ve got options when it comes to watching sports without cable. 

You can watch some live sports coverage for free from publicly broadcasted networks like ABC, FOX, CBS and NBC via over-the-air (OTA) TV. All you’ll need is a TV equipped with a digital antenna to watch OTA TV. Discover which antenna channels are available in your area with the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) Reception Map Tool

Several TV streaming services also enable you to watch live coverage of your favorite sports teams, including: 

  • ESPN+ 
  • FuboTV 
  • Hulu Plus Live TV 
  • YouTube TV 
  • Sling TV 
  • Paramount Plus 
  • Peacock Premium 
  • Apple TV+ 
  • Amazon Prime Video 
  • DAZN 
  • Individual league streaming services 

Which Streaming Service Is Best for Live Sports?

As a diehard sports fan, the best streaming service for live sports is one that provides coverage of sports events and teams you want to watch. Let’s take a closer look at what each streaming service offers when it comes to live sports coverage. 

Note: Check individual TV streaming providers channel lineups to learn about available programs in your area.  


Stream more live sports with DIRECTV STREAM than any other streaming service.  

DIRECTV STREAM enables you to stream sports on channels like ABC, FOX, ESPN, NBC, CBS, TNT, TBS, FS1, Big 10 network, the Tennis Channel, the Golf Channel, the Sportsman Channel and Fanduel TV. Additionally, DIRECTV STREAM has Regional Sports Networks such as the Longhorn Network and most league networks like NHL network and MLB network, as well as the NBA League Pass.  

DIRECTV STREAM also provides live score updates, notifications for when your favorite teams are playing and blackout playback options. Check out all the features for sports fans here.   

Price: $79.99 to $164.99 per month (plus taxes) 

Free trial: 5 days 


Stream NHL games, UFC events, global soccer tournaments such as La Liga, the FA Cup, and the Carabao Cup, golf tournaments like the Masters and the PGA Tour, tennis tournaments like Wimbledon and the U.S. Open, select MLB games, college football and basketball, lacrosse and cricket leagues coverage and the X Games.  

Price: $9.99 per month 

Free trial: No 


Stream live sports on channels like ESPN, ABC, CBS, NBC, FOX, FS1 and FS2, belN Sports, the Big 10, the Golf Channel and most league networks and regional sports networks (RSNs). 

Price: $74.99 to $94.99 per month 

Free trial: 7 days 

Hulu + Live TV (With Ads)

Stream live sports on channels like ESPN, FOX, ABC, CBS, TBS, NBC, FS1 and FS2, TNT, TruTV, NFL Network and some RSNs. With Hulu Plus Live TV, you’ll also get a free ESPN+ subscription.  

Price: $69.99 per month 

Free trial: No 

YouTube TV

Stream live sports on channels like ESPN, FS1 and FS2, ABC, CBS, TBS, NBC, FOX, TNT, the Golf Channel, the Big 10 network, the SEC network, most league networks like the NFL, MLB, and NBA networks and some RSNs.  

Price: $64.99 per month 

Free trial: Yes, but free trial lengths vary 

Sling TV

Stream live sports on channels like ESPN, NBC, FOX, TBS, FS1, USA, league networks for the NFL, NBA, NHL, and MLB, PAC 12, belN Sports, the Golf Channel and the Tennis Channel.  

Price: $40 to $55 per month 

Free trial: No 


Stream NFL games on CBS, UEFA Champions and Europa Leagues games, National Women’s Soccer League games, March Madness and highlights and expert analyses from CBS Sports HQ.  

Price: $4.99 to $9.99 per month 

Free trial: 7 days  

Peacock Premium

Stream Premier League soccer games, the Olympics, WWE wrestling events, Sunday Night Football games, MLB Sunday Leadoff, and select golf tournaments, as well as events related to Super Motocross racing, IndyCar racing, figure skating, cycling, track and field, rugby and more.  

Price: $4.99 to $9.99 per month 

Free trial: No 

Apple TV+

Stream MLB games on Friday nights. Apple TV+ subscribers can also stream MLS games with an additional MLS Season Pass subscription. Current Apple TV+ subscribers get a discounted rate for the MLS Season Pass: $12.99 per month or $79 per season. 

Price: $6.99 per month 

Free trial: 7 days 

Amazon Prime Video  

Stream Thursday-Night NFL games and select NBA, WNBA and MLB games with a standard Amazon Prime Video subscription. Subscribers can add on subscriptions such as the NBA League Pass, and Showtime (boxing) for additional fees. 

Price: $8.99 per month (Prime Video without Amazon Prime membership) 

Free trial: 30 days 


Stream live and on-demand boxing and mixed martial arts (MMA) events (excluding UFC events). DAZN also features UEFA Women’s Champions League, Liga F, Championship League Snooker, Premier League Darts, World Pool Championships, Champions Chess Tour, Professional Triathletes Organization (PTO) Tour, esports, extreme sports and select sports documentaries. 

Price: $19.99 per month or $149.99 per year 

Free trial: No 

Individual League Streaming Services

The MLB, NFL, NBA and MLS offer their own streaming services for live sports coverage, which enables subscribers to access out-of-market games that are unavailable on local affiliates. 

Note: The NHL’s streaming service,, is included with ESPN+.

Stream all out-of-market regular season MLB games both live (barring blackout restrictions) and on-demand. also offers offseason streaming packages that provides access to spring training games, documentaries, classic programs, World Series films and full game archives from the previous season.  


  • $129.99 per season for access to all teams 
  • $109.99 per season for a single-team subscription 
  • $24.99 for offseason package 

Free trial: 7 days 

NFL Sunday Ticket 

NFL Sunday Ticket is heading to YouTube TV and YouTube Primetime Channels in 2023. YouTube and the NFL will release updated streaming service prices, plans, features and functionality ahead of the 2023 NFL season.  

NBA League Pass

Stream hundreds of live NBA games with NBA League Pass. Subscribers also get access to NBA TV, which provides 24/7 coverage, classic NBA games since 2000, and original shows like Game Time, Shaqtin’ A Fool and High Tops. 

Note: The NBA League Pass is also available on DIRECTV STREAM. 


  • $14.99 to $19.99 per month for access to all teams 
  • $13.99 per month for single-team subscription 

Free trial: 7 days 

MLS Season Pass

Stream all regular season MLS matches, MLS playoff and MLS Cup matches and Leagues Cup matches on the Apple TV app. Subscribers will also be able to watch game replays, highlights, analyses and a selection of original programming. 


  • Apple TV+ subscribers: $12.99/month or $79/season 
  • Non-Apple TV+ subscribers: $14.99/month or $99/season 

Free trial: No 

What’s the Best Way to Watch Sports Without Cable? 

Signing up for a TV streaming service is the best way to watch sports without cable. Relying on OTA TV alone means you’ll only have access to a few major networks, not to mention you’ll need to be within range of your local broadcasting station to pick up a clear picture with your digital antenna.  

Stream Live Sports on DIRECTV STREAM

There are tons of different streaming services that include access to live sports coverage, but none quite like DIRECTV STREAM. Featuring exclusive access to DIRECTV sports coverage and Bally Sports Regional Networks, DIRECTV STREAM makes it easy to be the sports superfan you are.  

Explore DIRECTV’s streaming packages to find out which one features all your favorite sports channels and programs, and don’t forget to stay up to date with DIRECTV sports schedules so you don’t miss a minute of the gameplay. 

Frequently Asked Questions

FAQs:  What's the Cheapest Way to Watch Live Sports Without Cable?

Over-the-air (OTA) TV is the cheapest way to watch live sports, as it doesn’t require a cable or TV streaming service subscription. To watch sports via OTA TV, all you’ll need is a TV and a digital antenna. It’s important to note that OTA TV only provides access to major cable networks like ABC, FOX, CBS and NBC, and you’ll need to be in range of a local broadcasting station.

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