How To Bypass Blackouts with an NBA League Pass VPN

Explore the world of unrestricted NBA streaming by learning how to effectively use a VPN to bypass League Pass blackouts and enjoy every live game.
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The key to bypassing NBA blackouts is using a reliable virtual private network (VPN). With a VPN, you can change your IP address to appear as if you're in another location. That way, you can get around local blackout restrictions for access to every live and on-demand NBA game. 

Let’s understand how the best VPN services can transform your NBA viewing experience, ensuring you never miss a dunk, a three-pointer, or a buzzer-beater again.

In this article
How to watch NBA League Pass blackout games with a VPN
What are NBA League Pass blackouts?
How can a VPN help blackout NBA games?
Best VPNs for NBA League Pass
Tips for optimizing your NBA League Pass VPN
Bottom line

How to watch NBA League Pass blackout games with a VPN

To watch blackout games on NBA League Pass using a VPN involves several steps. These steps vary slightly depending on your device, such as a desktop, mobile, or smart TV.

Here’s a general guide to using your NBA League Pass VPN:

1. Select a reliable VPN service

When selecting a VPN for NBA League Pass streaming, prioritize services offering high connection speeds, a wide range of server locations, and strong security features. These factors ensure smooth streaming, the ability to bypass geographical restrictions, and the safeguarding of your online privacy.

Some top VPN providers known for bypassing geo-restrictions effectively include NordVPN, Surfshark, and Private Internet Access

2. Install and configure the VPN

Once you've selected your VPN, visit its official website and download the VPN app for your preferred device. Follow the installation prompts to install the software properly.

Log in to the VPN app and connect to a server where the NBA game you want to watch is not blacked out. For example, if you're in New York and the Knicks game is blacked out, choose a server in a different state.

3. Open NBA League Pass

Launch the NBA League Pass website or mobile application. You can use the NBA app to stream NBA League Pass on several supported devices, including iOS, Android, Android TV, and Apple TV.

Make sure your VPN is running and connected to the appropriate server before accessing the site or app. 

Now you should have access to live games without the limitations imposed by local blackouts. Remember, the effectiveness of this method depends on the quality of the VPN service and the server you're connected to. 

What are NBA League Pass blackouts?

NBA League Pass blackouts in the U.S. and Canada result from exclusive streaming rights based on geographical restrictions of live games. This means fans in specific regions may not access live local games on League Pass, despite the stream being available in other countries. For example, Boston residents would have to wait until post-airing to view Celtics games.

NBA blackouts stem from licensing agreements and regional broadcasting rights. Live games are primarily available through regional sports networks (like MSG Sportsnet) or national broadcasters (like ESPN). In short, blackouts protect regional broadcasters' exclusive telecast rights over nationally broadcast games.

However, these restrictions apply only to live games; post-airing, they're accessible on demand in the NBA League Pass Archives. You can watch nationally broadcast games three hours after they’ve aired and local U.S. telecast games three days after.

Despite a full NBA League Pass subscription, location-based blackouts limit live streaming access. Blackouts, determined by the viewer's IP address or location services, enforce regional broadcasting rights. Although blackout restrictions protect broadcasters, they often leave fans unable to live stream NBA games and support their favorite teams.

How can a VPN help stream blackout games?

A VPN establishes a secure connection between your device and a remote server. This encrypts your data and masking your true IP address. VPNs can protect your online identity and they can help access geo-restricted content. By selecting a server in another location, it would appear as if you're browsing from that location.

For NBA fans, an NBA League Pass VPN is particularly valuable. It enables access to live NBA League Pass games in areas where they might be blacked out due to regional restrictions. So if you’re a Lakers fan, you can enjoy a live game from the comfort of your Los Angeles home.

By connecting to a server in a non-restricted area, fans can bypass these blackouts and watch live games as if they were in a different location. This secure method is a far safer alternative to illegal streaming services, offering a reliable and risk-free way to follow your favorite NBA team.

Do free VPNs bypass NBA League Pass blackouts?

While the best free VPN services might seem tempting to bypass NBA League Pass geo-restrictions, their effectiveness and reliability often fall short compared to paid VPNs. Free VPNs typically have limited server options and slower connection speeds. They may also impose data caps, which can hinder the streaming experience, especially for live sports events. 

In contrast, paid VPN services like NordVPN offer advanced features, such as a wide range of server locations, faster and more stable connection speeds, and strong VPN encryption protocols. These features ensure a seamless, secure streaming experience for streaming live NBA games without buffering or interruptions.

Best VPNs to bypass NBA League Pass blackouts

When searching for the best NBA League Pass VPNs to bypass blackouts, you should look for services that specifically claim effectiveness in unblocking geo-restrictions. 

You should also the number of available servers, both in the U.S. and internationally. The range and location of these servers can significantly impact your ability to access games seamlessly. However, if you’d like to use an international server, you should consider opting for the International League Pass.

Here are three top VPN services that meet these criteria:

Starting price From $3.39/mo (billed every two years) From $3.39/mo (billed every two years) From $2.03/mo (billed every two years)
# of servers 6,400+ servers in 111 countries 3,200+ servers in 100 countries Servers in 91 countries
# of US servers 1,970+ servers in 8 states 600+ servers in 25 major cities Servers in 50 states
Smart device compatibility
Learn more Get NordVPN

Read NordVPN Review

Get Surfshark

Read Surfshark Review

Get Private Internet Access

Read Private Internet Access Review

Tips for optimizing your NBA League Pass VPN

To ensure the best possible experience while using a VPN with NBA League Pass, consider these key tips:

  • Choose the right server location. Select a VPN server where the NBA game is not subject to blackouts. Experiment with different server locations to find the one that offers the best speed and reliability.
  • Maintain a strong internet connection. A stable and fast internet connection is crucial for streaming NBA games without buffering. If your internet speed is slow, even the best VPN for NBA League Pass might not be able to provide a smooth streaming experience. Consider using a wired connection instead of Wi-Fi for more stability.
  • Use a reliable VPN provider. Opt for a VPN known for its fast connection speeds and a wide network of servers.
  • Keep your VPN updated. Regularly update your VPN software to ensure you have the latest features and security enhancements. This can also help prevent compatibility issues with the NBA League Pass platform.
  • Test your VPN connection before the game. Check your VPN setup and test your connection with NBA League Pass before the game starts to avoid last-minute issues. This allows you to troubleshoot any problems well in advance.

What to do when NBA League Pass VPN is not working

If you're unable to bypass NBA League Pass blackouts with your VPN, try these common solutions:

Troubleshoot NBA League Pass connection errors

If you encounter the 7027 error, it indicates NBA League Pass has detected VPN use. To bypass this, try switching to a different VPN server, as the current server's IP address might be banned.

For a 3312 error, signifying you're in a blackout region, change your VPN server to a location outside the blackout area.

Optimize VPN settings for better performance

Adjust your VPN settings for optimized streaming. Changing the VPN protocol or connecting to a less crowded server can sometimes enhance performance.

Check your VPN app for updates and patches

Ensure your VPN app is up to date. Outdated software can lead to connectivity issues or detection by NBA League Pass. Regular updates often include patches to overcome streaming service restrictions.



Why is the NBA League Pass game blocked in my area?

Certain areas have restrictions on NBA League Pass games due to local and national broadcasting rights. These measures protect the interests of regional broadcasters who hold exclusive rights to televise the games. 

As a result, if a game is being televised locally or nationally in the U.S. or Canada, it may be blacked out on the NBA League Pass in that region. Additionally, residents in the U.S. or Canada can’t access All-Star Weekend or NBA playoff games.


How does NBA League Pass know my location?

When accessing from a computer, NBA League Pass determines your location through your IP address, providing a geographic estimate of your location. It uses GPS location services on mobile devices to pinpoint your exact location. This information is used to enforce blackout restrictions based on regional broadcasting rights.


Can I access NBA League Pass blackout games on my mobile phone?

Using a VPN on your mobile phone allows you to access NBA League Pass blackout games on that device. On a computer, a VPN can mask your location by assigning you an IP address from a different region, bypassing the blackout restrictions. However, if you're accessing NBA League Pass on a mobile device, your location is determined by GPS, so ensure that your VPN also masks GPS location.


Can I use a VPN to get around NBA League Pass blackouts?

A VPN can be used to bypass blackout restrictions on NBA League Pass. By connecting to a VPN server in a region where the game is not blacked out, you can gain access to the game as if you were physically present in that region.


Is it against the NBA League Pass terms of service to use a VPN?

Bypassing blackout restrictions using a VPN may violate the terms of service of NBA League Pass. While VPN usage is widespread, it is crucial to familiarize oneself with the streaming service's terms of service to avoid potential NBA League Pass account restrictions resulting from violations.


In which countries is it illegal to use a VPN to watch NBA League Pass games?

The legality of VPN usage varies from country to country. While most countries say that using a VPN is legal, it's important to note that there are exceptions, such as China, Russia, and Iran, where unauthorized VPNs are restricted or prohibited. 

Before using a VPN for streaming NBA League Pass games, always make sure to verify the legal stance of your country.

Bottom line: Slam dunk your NBA viewing experience with VPNs

VPNs offer an effective solution for basketball fans looking to bypass NBA blackouts. Using a VPN allows you to enjoy an uninterrupted live streaming experience, gaining access to all games, regardless of your location.

Remember, the key to a smooth streaming experience lies in choosing the right VPN, with factors like server locations, connection speeds, and security features being paramount. While using VPNs to bypass geo-restrictions is common, it's important to use them responsibly and in compliance with the terms of service of the streaming platform.

For sports enthusiasts, especially those engaged in sports betting, a reliable VPN ensures access to all games and secures your online activities. Check out our recommendations for the best VPNs suited for sports betting.

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Author Details
Ryan Clancy is a freelance writer and blogger. With 5+ years of mechanical engineering experience, he's passionate about all things engineering and tech. He loves bringing engineering (especially mechanical) down to a level that everyone can understand.