April 9, 2019 12:00 PM PT

Best Ways to Watch UFC Online

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The Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) is the largest MMA organization in the world. Here's how you can watch the latest matches online without cable.

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In May 2018, the UFC signed a 5-year contract with ESPN. The agreement gives ESPN 42 live UFC events, beginning January 2019.

ESPN will air 10 exclusive events and all the UFC pay-per-view preliminary fights. Additionally, ESPN+, the network's streaming service, will feature 20 exclusive UFC events, and all preliminary fights from the UFC on ESPN Fight Night shows.

Thankfully, you won't need to subscribe to cable to catch the matches on ESPN. Here are the best providers to watch streaming UFC online.

ESPN+

ESPN+ is ESPN's streaming service, and it'll feature a ton of exclusive UFC content. That means you won't find those on ESPN's regular channels either.

Bear in mind that ESPN+ is not a standalone streaming service, and it won't replace your regular ESPN channels. It's a service available inside the ESPN app, or online through your browser.

Generally, ESPN+ features live games for mostly niche stuff. You'll find live soccer, boxing, golf, tennis, rugby, cricket, and, of course, UFC. They also have a few original programming and studio shows, and the 30 for 30 documentary film series.

For UFC fans, thankfully, ESPN+ comes with a small price tag. You can choose to pay $5/month, or $50 a year. Considering that ESPN+ will continue to feature UFC events for the next 5 years, it's a small price to pay.

If you only want to watch one fight on ESPN+, you can watch it for free. ESPN+ offers a 7-day free trial—just sign up a few days before the fight, watch it, and then cancel your subscription after!

UFC.TV

If you're really all about UFC, then you can also watch the fights by tuning in directly to UFC.TV.

You'll have to pay a monthly subscription, but they also offer discounted rates for 6- and 12-month subscriptions. However, for pay-per-view events, you'll still have to purchase your tickets for each match.

If you'd rather wait, UFC.TV adds the pay-per-view events to their library about a month after viewing.

The UFC FIGHT PASS is available on most devices, including laptops, Apple TV, Xbox One, Xbox 360, Amazon Fire TV, iPad, iPhone, Android devices, Chromecast, Roku, Samsung Smart TV, and LG Smart TV.

If you're a hardcore UFC fan and don't care about any other types of programming, then this is a good option for you. You can watch your matches without worrying if your TV provider has ESPN or not.

Cable Alternatives

Some of the UFC events are on ESPN's regular channels. The good news is, you don't have to subscribe to cable just to watch them. Here are a few alternatives for cord-cutters.

Sling TV

Sling TV is one of the cheapest options on this list. You'll find the ESPN, ESPN2, and ESPN3 channels in their Sling Orange package. If you're a sports fan, you can also get the Sling Orange & Blue packages—Sling Blue has the NFL Network and Fox Sports channels.

However, if you just care about catching the UFC matches, then stick with Sling Orange—you'll save more money that way. For a more detailed channel list, check their official website.

However, bear in mind that Sling Orange only allows 1 active stream at a time. Even if you get the 4 streams from the combined Sling Orange & Blue package, you'll still only have one stream for Sling Orange. This could be a problem for multiple viewers in the same house.

Regardless of your package, Sling TV has no contracts, and you can stop your service anytime. There are no equipment or installation fees either, so you can be flexible with your subscription.

Sling TV does have a Cloud DVR service, with 50 hours of storage. It works with Roku, Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, PCs, and smartphones.

Hulu

Hulu's options are less complicated than Sling TV. You can get their on-demand library or live TV service separately. Or you can combine them both.

Frankly, if you're going to get live TV, you might as well splurge for both services. The Hulu with Live TV plan is only $1 more than the standalone live TV plan. That extra $1 gives you access to Hulu's complete on-demand library, featuring thousands of Hulu original series, hit movies, and kid shows.

For those who want to watch UFC, you can catch matches on the ESPN and ESPN1 channels. Both are included in the Hulu Live TV package.

If you want to record the fights, Hulu's Live TV comes with a cloud DVR service. It has 50 hours of recording space. If that isn't enough, you can upgrade to their Enhanced Cloud DVR, with 200 hours of storage for a fee.

Hulu's Live TV service gives you two simultaneous streams, but you can also upgrade this to unlimited streaming in your home (again, for a fee). If you decide to travel, the upgrade also lets you stream on up to three separate devices while you're away from your home network.

YouTube TV

YouTube TV is another streaming service, like Sling TV and Hulu. They only have one package, which costs $40/month. For that price, you'll get live TV channels from 60+ networks, including ABC, CBS, FOX, NBC, and more. What's available exactly depends on where you are.

The good news is that ESPN is on their list of channels, so you'll be able to tune in on those UFC fights.

What might win you over is YouTube TV's unlimited cloud DVR. You get to record as many shows as you want at the same time. You can keep your recordings for up to 9 months before they delete it.

YouTube TV also lets you stream their service on up to 3 devices—for free. That's not bad at all.

If you're the type who relies heavily on DVR, YouTube would be a good choice.

DirecTV Now

Whereas YouTube TV has few choices, DIRECTV Now has plenty. You'll have 5 different plans to choose from, which range from $40/month to $75/month.

At the lowest tier, you'll get 65+ channels, while the highest tier has 125+ channels. There are also a bunch of international bundles, premium networks, and extra channel packs.

For UFC fans: Don't worry—all DIRECTV Now's plans have the basic ESPN channels. The only exception is the Spanish + English package (TODO Y MÁS), which has the Spanish language version, ESPN Deportes. But fret not, the UFC fights will be shown there too.

DIRECTV Now has 20 hours of free storage on their True Cloud DVR Beta. However, your recordings expire after 30 days. It's limited, but the upside is that you can watch your recordings from any device.

If you like having options and being able to customize your channels, DIRECTV Now is a good choice for you.

PlayStation Vue

The PlayStation Vue is another over-the-top TV service provider, with plenty of live TV channels. It's available on iOS, Android, Roku, and Fire TV.

They offer four main packages: Access, Core, Elite, and Ultra. The Access package features almost 50 channels and includes channels like Disney and SyFy. On the other end, with the Ultra package, you'll get 90+ channels, including HBO and Showtime.

For UFC fans: Don't worry—ESPN channels are available on all their packages.

PlayStation Vue's DVR limits your recordings to 500 episodes, which last for 28 days. You'll also get five unique streams, although it's subject to a few rules. Still, that's more streams than other providers we've reviewed.

PlayStation Vue isn't the cheapest TV provider on the list, but it has a good quality broadcast that features 60 frames-per-second. They also have a Multi-View feature, which lets you watch up to 3 programs at once.

If you want to watch the matches in good video quality, PlayStation Vue might be for you.

Bottom Line

If you just want to watch UFC matches, your cheapest option might be to just subscribe to Sling TV and ESPN+. With these two providers, you'll get the majority of the matches. However, bear in mind that you'll still need to pay for the pay-per-view matches.

If price isn't an issue, then the best way is to subscribe to UFC.TV directly. You're guaranteed to find all the fights in one place, without having to swap between ESPN+ and ESPN.

UFC fights are always exciting to watch, and they're finally becoming mainstream! We hope we helped make it easier for you to watch the fights online.

Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are author's alone. Please support CreditDonkey on our mission to help you make savvy decisions. Our free online service is made possible through financial relationships with some of the products and services mentioned on this site. We may receive compensation if you shop through links in our content.

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