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The best sports streaming services and the different packages they offer

Missing your favorite team's game isn't happening anymore. With any of these sports streaming services, you can catch every touchdown, goal, and three-pointer from anywhere.
Written by Josh Slate, Contributor

In recent years, we have seen leagues like the NFL, NHL, MLS, and MLB make a shift to streaming services for select events. Use NFL's Thursday Night Football on Amazon Prime Video this year as an example. But the NFL isn't the only league with games on a streaming service. The NHL can be watched live on ESPN+ and the MLS has a partnership with Apple TV.

Also: The best movies and shows to stream right now

There are a variety of options when it comes to sports streaming as some providers cover just sports like ESPN+, while others like Youtube TV, Hulu + Live TV, and Sling TV offer a cable experience without a cable box. With so many great providers offering excellent streaming services, the time to join the cord-cutters is now. 

Here are the 5 best sports streaming services of 2023.

Pros & Cons
  • $30 off first three months
  • Customizable interface makes for easy navigation
  • Unlimited DVR space
  • Most regional sports networks are unavailable
More Details

Channels: 100+ | Concurrent streams: 3 | Starting price: $54.99/mo | Free trial: 7 days

YouTube TV has emerged as one of the best options for live streaming services, but when it comes to sports, they have the top spot by a long shot. At its starting price of $64.99 per month, you get over 100 channels with unlimited DVR space. But if you're willing to pay extra, you can subscribe to their Sports Plus Add-on or select various networks from their collection to add to your streaming library.

If you're a sports junkie like myself, YouTube TV provides all the sports coverage I need with the ESPN collection, Fox Sports 1 and 2, NBA TV, and both the MLB and NFL Network. In addition to the channels covering professional sports, YouTubeTV also offers the ACC Network, Big Ten Network, ESPNU, and the SEC Network for collegiate sports fanatics.

While the Google-owned service has an impressive lineup of sports channels, there are also plenty of channels available in entertainment and news including local channels, CNN, Fox News, and the FX collection. There's truly a channel for everyone on YouTube TV, and coming from someone who uses this service daily, you get loads of content for just $64.99 per month as compared to the competition.

Pros & Cons
  • Over 1,000 live NHL games
  • Mid-major college basketball is covered
  • Access to exclusive articles and sports coverage
  • Most collegiate broadcasts aren't in 1080p
  • Hard to navigate to find your favorite teams
More Details

Channels: N/A | Concurrent streams: 3 | Starting price: $9.99/mo | Free trial: No

ESPN+ isn't a live TV streaming service as the likes of YouTube TV and Hulu + Live TV, but the live sports on the service feature some high-quality leagues. Beginning last season, the NHL began streaming many of their games on ESPN+, and this season, the platform will stream over 1,000 live NHL games. 

While professional athletics take up most of the popularity surrounding the ESPN+ platform, it's their college athletic broadcasts that really allow it to impress. Select games from the Power Five conferences are streamed while a majority of the games consist of mid-majors including the American Athletic Conference, Atlantic 10, Big South, and Conference USA to name a few.

In addition to their live sports coverage, there are also ESPN+ original shows including The Captain, Man in the Arena: Tom Brady, and Bananaland. Where most live TV streaming services lack in sports coverage, ESPN+ picks up. While this can't replace your cable or streaming subscription, at a low price of $9.99 per month, you can subscribe while your favorite sport is in season and cancel at any time.

Pros & Cons
  • Disney+ and ESPN+ subscriptions included
  • Sports package for just $9.99 /mo extra
  • Not as many channels as YouTubeTV
  • 2 concurrent streams
More Details

Channels: 75+ | Concurrent streams: 2 | Starting price: $68.99/mo | Free trial: No

The competition between Netflix and Hulu has been ongoing since Hulu's creation in 2007. But now, Hulu enters a new field with a new competitor, YouTubeTV. While Hulu + Live TV has a high subscription price, it ultimately adds more for the viewers with a Disney+ and ESPN+ subscription included in two of their three packages. Essentially, Hulu offers access to three streaming services, Hulu, Disney+, and ESPN+, along with live TV starting at $70 per month with ads, or for $13 more per month with no ads. 

When it comes to sports channels, Hulu + Live TV is behind without offering NBA TV and the MLB Network, but if basketball and baseball aren't your thing, then this doesn't make a major impact to your decision. If you're a football fan, Hulu + Live TV could be the perfect option for you, especially with access to "seven hours of commercial-free football" on NFL RedZone.

With Hulu + Live TV, all your local channels, national news networks, and entertainment channels are at the tip of your fingers. Though it lacks the number of channels as its competitors, the quality of channels are top-notch and a great pick for any cord cutter.

Pros & Cons
  • Unlimited DVR
  • Unlimited concurrent streams on home network
  • Carries Bally Sports on most of its package options
  • Very expensive
  • NFL Network not offered
More Details

Channels: 75+ | Concurrent streams: Unlimited | Starting price: $74.99/mo | Free trial: 30 days

Most live TV streaming services make it hard to be a fan of your local team. Fortunately, DIRECTV Stream allows you to have access to Bally Sports so you can watch your home MLB or NBA team based on your zip code. In addition, the service offers an array of packages ranging from $74.99/mo to $154.99/ mo for live TV streaming. But, the $99.99/mo "CHOICE" plan will be the one that gives sports fans all they need.

With the "CHOICE" package, subscribers will have access to 105+ channels including the ESPN collection of channels, an assortment of collegiate conference networks, and FS1. But for non-sports fans, this package includes plenty of channels in entertainment, local channels, and kids channels so there's a channel for the whole family.

For the hardcore NBA fans out there, DIRECTV Stream offers NBA League Pass Premium for an additional $19.99/mo. This add-on gets you up to 40 out-of-market games so you won't miss a single layup, three-pointer, or buzzer-beater this NBA regular season.

Pros & Cons
  • Offers NHL Network on Sports Extra plan
  • Cheapest live TV choice
  • Add-ons are inexpensive
  • Just 50 hours of DVR storage
  • Not many channels
More Details

Channels: 31 | Concurrent streams: 1 | Starting price: $40/mo | Free trial: No

As a recent college graduate, I know a lot about making the most of my money. That being said, a subscription to Sling TV will give you the most bang for your buck with packages starting at just $40/mo for a 31-channel package.

To get the most out of a Sling TV subscription as a sports fan, you'll likely need to subscribe to the $55/mo, Orange and Blue package which is still $10 cheaper than YouTubeTV. With the Orange and Blue package from Sling TV, subscribers will get sports channels including ESPN, ESPN2, ESPN3, FS1, and the NFL Network. Additionally, the subscription includes TNT, truTV, and TBS so you won't miss a minute of upcoming NCAA March Madness Tournament.

For just $11 extra, subscribers can add-on the Sports Extra package to watch the NFL RedZone, MLB Network, NBA TV, and the NHL Network among other collegiate networks. If you're looking for the cheapest option to stream your favorite sports and don't mind missing out on CBS and some regional NBA and MLB games, Sling TV is a top-tier choice.

What is the best sports streaming service?

There are plenty of sports streaming platforms, but until you lay them out and compare them, its hard to choose the top options. The most important features when deciding on a sports streaming service is the amount of channels, how many concurrent streams are allowed, as well as the price.

Use this table below to compare the various sports streaming platforms.

Sports streaming app


Concurent streams


YouTube TV








Hulu + Live TV





$73.49/mo or $293.96/yr



Sling TV




Which is the right sports streaming service for you?

Each streaming services has their pros and cons, making different platforms the perfect fit for different people. Consider this table to find out when scenario describes you best.

Choose this sports streaming app…

If you want…

YouTube TV

A full live TV package with the most sports channels.


A die-hard hockey or mid-major college basketball fan.

Hulu + Live TV

A cable alternative that is perfect for the whole family.


To follow your local teams without a separate subscription.

Sling TV

A sports streaming service that gives you the necessary channels to follow your favorite sports.

How did we choose these sports streaming services?

When deciding which sports streaming service was the best overall, it was easy to decide that YouTube TV was the top choice. Not only do you get access to over 100 channels on the base package, you get some of the biggest sports channels on TV.

Most of the streaming platforms included in this guide, I have used including YouTube TV, ESPN+, and Hulu + Live TV. With my prior experience with the platforms, I was able to rank them accordingly as to how they satisfied my sports viewing needs. As for the ones I haven't had hands-on experience with, I researched them heavily to make sure their placing in the top-five was accurate based on their features.

What is the best college basketball streaming app?

ESPN+ is perfect for college basketball fans, especially those "mid-major" teams. You can stream over 2,000 college basketball games per season with ESPN+.

Can I watch ESPN on ESPN+?

No. An ESPN+ subscription does not grant access to the network ESPN.

Can I get an NFL Sunday Ticket without DIRECTV?

Yes, but there are certain requirements. You must either be currently enrolled in college, live in select cities or reside in an area that does not have access to DIRECTV.

Are there alternative sports streaming services worth considering?

With so many sports streaming platforms out there, it was hard to consolidate them into one list. Here are a few honorable mentions and great choices when looking at other alternatives:

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