Live Stream the NHL Playoffs 2020 & Stanley Cup Finals on Your Apple Device without Cable

The NHL Playoffs 2020 are coming up, and excitement is building for the Stanley Cup Finals. Questions about the NHL Finals? We'll go over the NHL Playoff schedule, including the Stanley Cup Finals schedule for 2020. You'll also find the playoffs and Stanley Cup channel, and how to live stream all the Stanley Cup Finals to Apple devices including the iPhone, iPad, and Apple TV, without cable.

Related: Apple TV: Your Complete Guide to Setting Up & Streaming On-Demand Content    

NHL Playoff Schedule (including Stanley Cup Finals Schedule)

The playoff games begin on April 8 and will continue over the next few weeks through Round 1, Round 2, the Conference Finals, and finally, the Stanley Cup Finals. For details on game times, network coverage, and ticket sales, visit the NHL schedule webpage. 

Playoffs & Stanley Cup Channels

The NHL Playoff games will be broadcast on NBC affiliate channels again this year: NBC, NBC Sports, CNBC, USA, and the NHL Network. Stanley Cup games, including finals, will be split between NBC and NBC Sports.

NHL Playoff Bracket

The NHL Playoff bracket still hasn't been updated for 2020, but keep checking back, as they should have that issue fixed any day now.

How to Watch the NHL Playoffs & Stanley Cup 2020 without Cable

With most of the playoff games on NBC affiliate channels, I wish I could tell you to download the NBC app for free on your Apple TV; but sadly, I can't. The NBC app requires you to enter a code from your satellite or cable provider to start streaming, so cable-cutters can't use this app. In another disappointing turn of events, those of us who thought we could use our NHL.TV subscriptions to watch the playoffs live will have to settle for catching the games on demand after the live broadcasts are over. There are other options for cord-cutters to watch all the playoff games live on Apple TV and other Apple devices, though. Let's go over the options below, including Sling, fubo, Hulu, YouTube TV, so you can learn which one works best for you. 

Live Stream NHL Playoffs 2020 & Stanley Cup with Sportsnet NOW

This service is only available for those lucky Canadians out there, but I want to mention it as it's such a great option for catching every single playoff game this season. With features including HD broadcast, split-screen viewing, 24-hour rewind on select channels, and even on-demand programming, I'm more than a bit jealous of Canadians right now.

nhl live stream 

Compatibility: fourth-generation Apple TV and later, iPhone and iPad running iOS 11 and later

Cost: $20.83 per month

Pros: Cheaper month-to-month subscription available, cancel at any time before subscription renews 

Con: Only available in Canada

Watch the NHL Playoffs 2020 & Stanley Cup on OTA TV

nhl live stream free

OTA stands for over the air; in other words, an antenna! Yes, it's true, you can legally pick up locally broadcasted channels and stream them to your Apple TV with an antenna. While you might be envisioning the old-fashioned version that looks like a laundry rack attached to your roof, there are now lots of OTA options that stay right inside your house. Some can boost signals, as well, which is really helpful if you live in a rural area. There are lots of choices, so look into whether NBC is broadcast in your area, or could be picked up with an antenna that features signal boosting. If you can pick up NBC with your OTA antenna, you'll be able to catch some of the 2020 playoff games. Some OTA buying options include AirTV, SiliconDust, and Mohu, but there are lots more out there. Check out the Mohu website for a handy tool that lets you enter your zip code to find out how far major broadcasting towers are from your location, then choose an antenna powerful enough to pick up those signals. 

Live Stream the 2020 Stanley Cup Playoffs on AT&T TV Now

Compatibility: Fourth and fifth-generation Apple TV, iPhones and iPads with iOS 11 or later 

Cost: $65 per month

Pros: Seven-day free trial period, streaming included for AT&T Wireless Customers

Cons: NBC live not available in all areas

at&t tv

AT&T TV Now, formerly DirecTV, offers five different packages, and the lowest cost plan includes NBC! Then I looked at the small print to the right of each channel and noticed small boxes indicating "Live," "Vod," or both. Live is pretty obvious, live streaming is available, but "vod?" That stands for video on demand, and if only vod is offered, you won't be able to live stream games from that network. Check with AT&T TV Now to make sure that live, not vod NBC, is included in your area

Stream the NHL Playoffs & Stanley Cup Finals with fuboTV

stanley cup playoffs

Compatibility: fourth-generation Apple TV and later, iPhones and iPads running iOS 10 and later

Cost: $54.99 a month 

Pros: Seven-day free trial period with no commitment 

Con: Channel availability varies by region
FuboTV is a TV-streaming service with a heavy focus on live sports. Fubo's basic package offers more than 85 channels of content that include NBC, NBCSN, NBC Sports, CNBC, USA, and the Golf Channel. If you subscribe to FuboTV, you'll be able to catch all the 2020 NFL Playoff games, as long as the full menu of channels is available in your area.

To sign up for FuboTV and find the Apple TV, iPhone, and iPad apps, click here.

NHL Playoffs & Stanley Cup 2020 Live with Sling TV 

sling tv

Compatibility: Fourth and fifth-generation Apple TV, iPhones, iPads, and iPod Touch with iOS 11 or later 

Cost: $30 per month for Sling Blue, plus $10 per month for Sports Extra

Pros: 10 hours free Cloud DVR storage

Con: Channel availability varies by region

Sling TV is an à la carte streaming TV service that allows viewers to pay far less than a cable subscription would cost. Use your ten free hours of Cloud DVR to record the playoff games and watch them later if you have work or family plans to accommodate. If you purchase Sling Blue and the Sports Extra package, you should have access to all the NHL Playoff channels, but offerings vary from region to region. Make sure the channels you need are available in your area. 

Here are step-by-step instructions to help you find and install the Sling TV app on your Apple TV, iPhone, or iPad

Stanley Cup Finals & Playoffs with Hulu 

Compatibility: Fourth-generation Apple TV and later,  iPhones and iPads running iOS 12 and later can run the new Hulu app

Cost: Hulu + Live TV is $54.99/month with commercials and $60.99/month with no commercials

Pros: Personalized profiles for each family member, record and save up to 50 hours of content with Cloud DVR

Cons: NBC is not broadcast in all areas

super bowl on hulu

You need to purchase the Hulu + Live TV package to watch the NHL Playoffs on Hulu, but unless there's an NBC affiliate in your broadcast area, you won't be able to catch all the games. On the plus side, you can pick your favorite teams to follow, and Hulu will recommend games for you to watch.

Watch 2020 Stanley Cup Playoffs on YouTube TV

Compatibility: Fourth-generation and later Apple TV, iPhones, iPads, and iPod Touch with iOS 11 or later, stream to your TV using AirPlay

Cost: Free trial, then $49.99/month

Pros: Free recording with unlimited storage

Cons: NBC live not available in all areas

youtube tv

Here's another option that includes NBC and over 70 other channels as well! Make sure that NBC live is included in your service area before subscribing. 

Top image credit: klarka0608 /
Master your iPhone in one minute a day: Sign up here to get our FREE Tip of the Day delivered right to your inbox.


Author Details

Leanne Hays's picture

Author Details

Leanne Hays

Leanne Hays has over a dozen years of experience writing for online publications. As a Feature Writer for iPhone Life, she has authored hundreds of how-to, Apple news, and gear review articles, as well as a comprehensive Photos App guide. Leanne holds degrees in education and science and loves troubleshooting and repair. This combination makes her a perfect fit as manager of our Ask an Expert service, which helps iPhone Life Insiders with Apple hardware and software issues.
In off-work hours, Leanne is a mother of two, homesteader, audiobook fanatic, musician, and learning enthusiast.