The 2020 NBA season has been the strangest and most unexpected season in professional basketball history. In fact, it is probably fair to say that it has been one of the strangest seasons in all of professional sports. With the COVID-19 pandemic putting things on pause, splitting up the playoffs and leaving sports fans everywhere unsure of what was to come, this year’s NBA season has truly been unusual and interesting, to say the least.
Not only did the Coronavirus put a freeze on all gameplay up until the end of August, but now that the NBA has decided to progress with its playoff schedule, picking up where it left off, watching the games, too, has been a rather weird experience. As the virus still rages on, especially throughout the United States (where the majority of these games are played), fans are still not allowed to attend games. This alone would have been weird enough, to be sure, to watch the games on TV with no audience whatsoever. What the NBA has done, though, (and, arguably, the only thing that they could do) has made the experience even more surreal.
Instead of airing televised games in which two NBA teams play against one another in an empty stadium, the NBA has chosen to let fans attend games via video chat. So, instead of seeing thousands of fans going crazy when a player hits a 3-pointer, we see a wall of screens projecting the faces of a chosen few as they sit in front of their webcams, reacting (mostly with facial expressions) to the game as it plays out. Watching the NBA playoffs in 2020 has turned into something straight out of a Black Mirror episode.
This has resulted in a significant drop in ratings for the NBA, especially during the playoffs. Watching professional basketball, it turns out, just is not the same without the audience there to cheer on their team and create a palpable sense of energy and excitement. I never knew what a pivotal role that the audience played in professional sports broadcasts until now. Watching NBA games in 2020 is something more akin, I think, to watching a scrimmage match or a team practice.
Plus, up until just a few days ago, the NBA playoffs were yet again in a state of limbo. In response to yet another police shooting of an unarmed black man (this time in Kenosha, Wisconsin), the players of the Milwaukee Bucks decided to strike as a form of protest, refusing to take the court for game 5 of the Bucks’ first round series against the Orlando Magic.
Shortly thereafter, more and more teams joined in on the strike. In fact, this message of solidarity was not even contained to just the NBA. Teams from the MLB and WNBA, as well as famous tennis players also put everything on the line to stand in solidarity (or kneel, rather) with the Black Lives Matter Movement and Jacob Blake, who was gunned down in front of his children.
It turned out to be one of the shortest-lived strikes of professional sports history, though. In a matter of just 48 hours, the NBA and players reached an agreement (which included league-sanctioned forms of protest, such as pre-approved statements on the backs of players’ jerseys). And, as of now, the NBA playoffs, once again, are back on.
Even though this is a strange and tumultuous time for the NBA (and, indeed, the world), I don’t see any of this as reason to not watch the NBA playoffs this year. In fact, in my opinion, all of this makes the playoffs all the more fascinating and unpredictable. It is truly anybody’s game at this point. The experts and pundits are all but worthless this year. I, for one, can’t wait to keep up with my team and see who takes the championship this time around.
However, it can be rather difficult to keep up with the games when you don’t have a cable subscription. Especially now that we cannot simply head to the pub to catch the game with our buds. Fortunately, though, there are a handful of great sites that let you stream live NBA games, 100% free of charge. And if you are in the market for one of these sites, well, you definitely came to the right place.
NBA Bite started as a subreddit, believe it or not. r/NBAstreams was one of the most popular subreddits in existence for years. At its peak, it was home to over 400,000 subscribers.
The site that we will be taking a look at today is NBA Bite. It is, in my opinion, one of the best resources for finding free live NBA games. But that is not the only thing that can be found here. Let’s dive in and take a look at everything that NBA Bite has to offer, shall we?
The neat and organized way that NBA Bite is designed is, in my opinion, one of the site’s best features. From the moment I landed on the home page, the site had a warm, inviting, tidy, and intuitive feel to it that is rare – not only on free live sports streaming sites such as this one, but on streaming sites in general. It offers a minimalistic approach that is game focused and makes for an extremely user-friendly experience, whether you want to browse by team, schedule. conference, or game. The choice is all yours.
With an easy to browse schedule that lets you quickly track every upcoming and currently live NBA game, you don’t have to worry at all about navigating a cumbersome or cluttered menu to quickly tune into your game of choice. NBA Bite makes free live streaming NBA games as easy it should be. Just click “Live” and choose a stream.
Content and Features
So, in addition to offering free live streams of every NBA game as it occurs (did I mention that many of them are available in HD?), NBA Bite allows users to track scores and keep up to date with everything in the way of NBA news thanks to a live Twitter feed (customized to include all relevant and major NBA related tweets). Here, too, you can filter by your favorite team. Not only is NBA Bite an incredible resource for free live NBA games, but it is a decent place to stay up to date with the latest in NBA news (which, as we have already established, is ever-changing these days).
Plus, NBA Bite also includes a quick-access link to its sister site, NFL Bite, which is identical to NBA Bite, just geared only towards free live NFL games. So, whether you are looking for a one-stop shop for free live NBA games or free live NFL games, NBA Bite has you covered!
Mobile and Desktop Experience
My biggest criticism of NBA Bite is that I think their mobile site could be much better. Don’t get me wrong, the site still works on mobile devices … but the layout could be tweaked. For instance, certain elements of the page text runs into each other and the format is not nearly as intuitive as it is on a desktop computer. But, hey, it is still a great resource for streaming live NBA games from your phone or tablet. The streams themselves work just fine.
Suggestions that I have for NBA Bite
Naturally, I would like NBA Bite to revamp their mobile site. A mobile redesign, I think, is in order. It would also be nice if NBA Bite could develop an app, alternately, to make their mobile experience as good as their desktop one is (or at least a little more comparable!).
Other than that, though, I love this site. My only real complaint is that I can’t use it everywhere!