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Cord Cutters Can’t Watch Los Angeles Lakers, Denver Nuggets, or Utah Jazz Games This Season

Jason Gurwin

Entering the 2019-2020 NBA season, nearly every NBA team can be watched by fans even if they’ve dropped cable. However, if you live in Los Angeles, Denver, or Salt Lake City — you won’t be able to watch your local NBA team with a Live TV Streaming Service like Hulu Live TV, YouTube TV, or PlayStation Vue.

That’s because the Regional Sports Networks in each of those markets — Spectrum SportsNet, AT&T SportsNet Rocky Mountain, and Altitude haven’t yet made deals with streaming providers.

AT&T TV fuboTV Hulu Philo Sling TV YouTube
Sign Up Free Trial Free Trial Free Trial Sign Up Sign Up
69,99 $ 64,99 $ 64,99 $ 20 $ 35 $ 35 $ 64,99 $
Altitude ≥ 84,99 $ - - - - - -
AT&T SportsNet Rocky Mountain ≥ 84,99 $ - - - - - -
Spectrum SportsNet ≥ 84,99 $ - - - - - -

Last summer, NBA superstar Lebron James, signed as a free-agent with the Los Angeles Lakers, and this summer, Anthony Davis joined him. But unfortunately for cord-cutters in L.A., they won’t be able to watch them.

Back in February 2011, the Lakers and Time Warner Cable signed a $3 billion, 20-year cable television agreement to televise the games on Spectrum SportsNet. This season the channel will air 70 regular season games.

Spectrum SportsNet is one of the few regional sports networks (RSN) that are unavailable on any of the major Live TV Streaming Services. The channel is currently offered by traditional cable and satellite companies - DirecTV, Spectrum, Cox, AT&T U-verse, and Frontier.

In the case of Altitude and the Denver Nuggets, they are currently in a carriage dispute with DirecTV, Dish Network, and Comcast — meaning even if you had cable or satellite you wouldn’t be able to watch them.

In the last two years, most regional sports networks have become available to streaming services. One of the holdouts from last season, AT&T SportsNet Southwest, which carries Houston Rockets games is now available through fuboTV.

AT&T TV fuboTV Hulu Philo Sling TV YouTube
Sign Up Free Trial Free Trial Free Trial Sign Up Sign Up
69,99 $ 64,99 $ 64,99 $ 20 $ 35 $ 35 $ 64,99 $
AT&T SportsNet Southwest ≥ 84,99 $ - - - - -

This means all but three NBA teams can have their games streamed locally with streaming services.

Oddly enough, fans outside of these areas will be able to catch almost every single Lakers, Nuggets, or Jazz game.

By subscribing to NBA League Pass, the league’s out-of-market package, fans around the world can watch all but nationally televised games for $199 a season. This has led to many local fans without cable to use a VPN to mask their location to overcome blackout restrictions.

With over 40 million people expected to cut the cord by the end of 2019, sooner or later these channels are going to have to offer their channel through other services in order to maintain their viewership.

Want to Watch NBA Games without Cable?

  • You can read our full guide comparing different cord-cutting services like PlayStation Vue, fuboTV, Hulu Live TV, YouTube TV, AT&T TV NOW, Sling TV, and NBA League Pass.
  • Use our Channel Finder to add your favorite NBA Team and we’ll help find the best streaming service for you.

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