Watching the new NBA season in Australia? All the broadcast changes to know
While the NBA season is finally back to normal, how you can watch it has changed.
After Josh Giddey impressed as a rookie last year, this season another Australian Dyson Daniels will debut after going 8th in the draft.
Ben Simmons is back on the court and the Golden State Warriors are looking to go back-to-back despite preseason drama.
Aussies are the third most represented country in the NBA. Without a doubt, that has also caused viewership of the NBA to spike in Australia. However, how you can watch the NBA from Australia has changed this season.
No more NBA games on SBS
SBS's 2-year NBA broadcast deal has come to an end. Over the previous 2 seasons, Australians could watch 2 games per week via SBS Viceland or SBS On Demand.
The games on offer were handy as they differed from the games shown on Kayo and Foxtel, plus they were free. They also often featured teams with Australian players.
League Pass prices have dropped significantly
League Pass remains the only way to watch all 1,230 games on the NBA schedule. The good news is it's significantly cheaper for the 2022/23 season – over $180 a year cheaper.
|Package||2021/22 monthly price||2022/23 monthly price||2021/22 annual price||2022/23 annual price|
|League Pass Premium||$51.99||$29.99||$389.99||$209.99|
Team Pass allows you to select 1 team to watch for the whole season. League Pass and League Pass Premium give you access to every single regular season and Playoff game.
The only difference is that the Premium version allows you to watch on 2 devices at once rather than 1.
The app has also had a huge facelift. As an avid League Pass user, I'm still getting used to the new interface. Navigation is trickier but otherwise, the app still works fine.
It's still a must for anyone that's more than a casual fan. Between the price decreases and being able to split the cost with a friend on the League Pass Premium package, it finally feels like good value.
Expanded ESPN NBA coverage
On the eve of the opening night of the season, ESPN announced it would be expanding its NBA coverage.
This includes increasing the number of average games per week shown from 7 to 9. That equates to an extra 48 regular season games. That at least offsets the games lost via SBS, but obviously, those games aren't free as you'll be paying at least $25 per month for a Kayo subscription.
In Australia, ESPN games shown are typically the national broadcast games from the US via ESPN, TNT and ABC.
That means the expanded coverage is great if you're a Golden State, Lakers, Celtics, Suns, Clippers, 76ers or Nuggets fan as they dominate the national TV schedule.
Though if you're a fan of a team like OKC, the Magic, Kings, Pistons or even Raptors, you will be lucky to watch them in Australia without League Pass.
Next up is expanded playoff coverage. ESPN framed this as "an enhanced game packages for the first and second round of the NBA Playoffs". What that means though isn't clear.
Up until this season, ESPN would show at least half of the first and second round games. So you can likely expect more live games now. However, many of the early round fixtures tip off from 3am AEST, so at the very least it will give you the option to watch a replay or condensed game.
ESPN already had full coverage of the Conference Finals and Finals. The All-Star Weekend and NBA draft still remain in the new agreement.
In addition to the NBA, ESPN has every NBL game live along with WNBL and Boomers games.
NBA opening Australian ESPN schedule
|Date||Game||Time (AEDT)||How to watch|
|Sat 22 Oct||Miami Heat vs Boston Celtics||10:15 AM||Kayo Sports, Foxtel, NBA League Pass|
|Sat 22 Oct||Golden State Warriors vs Denver Nuggets||12:35 PM||Kayo Sports, Foxtel, NBA League Pass|
|Sun 23 Oct||Orlando Magic vs Boston Celtics||9:30 AM||Kayo Sports, Foxtel, NBA League Pass|
|Wed 26 Oct||New Orleans Pelicans vs Dallas Mavericks||10:00 AM||Kayo Sports, Foxtel, NBA League Pass|
|Wed 26 Oct||Phoenix Suns vs Golden State Warriors||12:30 PM||Kayo Sports, Foxtel, NBA League Pass|
|Thu 27 Oct||Milwaukee Bucks vs Brooklyn Nets||10:15 AM||Kayo Sports, Foxtel, NBA League Pass|
|Thu 27 Oct||Denver Nuggets vs Los Angeles Lakers||12:35 PM||Kayo Sports, Foxtel, NBA League Pass|
|Fri 28 Oct||Oklahoma City Thunder vs LA Clippers||10:30 AM||Kayo Sports, Foxtel, NBA League Pass|
|Sat 29 Oct||Washington Wizards vs Indiana Pacers||10:15 AM||Kayo Sports, Foxtel, NBA League Pass|
|Sat 29 Oct||Phoenix Suns vs New Orleans Pelicans||12:35 PM||Kayo Sports, Foxtel, NBA League Pass|
|Mon 31 Oct||Los Angeles Lakers vs Denver Nuggets||12:00 PM||Kayo Sports, Foxtel, NBA League Pass|
|Wed 2 Nov||Oklahoma City Thunder vs Orlando Magic||10:00 AM||Kayo Sports, Foxtel, NBA League Pass|
|Wed 2 Nov||Phoenix Suns vs Minnesota Timberwolves||12:30 PM||Kayo Sports, Foxtel, NBA League Pass|
|Thu 3 Nov||Chicago Bulls vs Charlotte Hornets||10:15 AM||Kayo Sports, Foxtel, NBA League Pass|
|Thu 3 Nov||Portland Trail Blazers vs Memphis Grizzlies||12:35 PM||Kayo Sports, Foxtel, NBA League Pass|
|Fri 4 Nov||Oklahoma City Thunder vs Denver Nuggets||10:30 AM||Kayo Sports, Foxtel, NBA League Pass|
|Sat 5 Nov||Boston Celtics vs Chicago Bulls||10:15 AM||Kayo Sports, Foxtel, NBA League Pass|
|Sat 5 Nov||Minnesota Timberwolves vs Milwaukee Bucks||12:35 PM||Kayo Sports, Foxtel, NBA League Pass|
|Mon 7 Nov||LA Clippers vs Utah Jazz||1:30 PM||Kayo Sports, Foxtel, NBA League Pass|
|Tue 8 Nov||Golden State Warriors vs Sacramento Kings||1:30 PM||Kayo Sports, Foxtel, NBA League Pass|
Is the NBA season not giving you enough drama? See the best current basketball shows you can stream in Australia.
Image source: Kayo Sports website