After a long road, shortened season, and an injury-plagued postseason, the 2021 NBA Finals are finally here. After defeating the Atlanta Hawks in the Eastern Conference Finals, the 46-26 Milwaukee Bucks came out on top in the East after entering the playoffs as the 3rd seed in the Conference.
With Game 1 of the NBA Finals beginning tonight, the Bucks will be without former 2-time NBA MVP Giannis Antetokoumpo who suffered a knee injury in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Finals. The Bucks will be missing him on both sides of the ball as Antetokounmpo leads his team in scoring and he’s an elite defensive player.
The 51-21 Phoenix Suns had the 2nd seed in the Western Conference but will have home court advantage through the playoffs. They’ve had an impressive playoff run led by the leadership of Chris Paul and the young combination of Devin Booker and Deandre Ayton. Ayton has come into his own throughout this postseason and even outplayed NBA MVP Nikola Jokic when the Suns played the Nuggets earlier in the playoffs. Chris Paul will be looking to win his first NBA Finals this year after never advancing past the second round in his Hall of Fame-worthy career.
This is the first time either one of these teams has reached the Finals since the turn of the millennium. 1993 was the last time the Suns reached the NBA Finals, but they were defeated by Michael Jordan’s Chicago Bulls. The Bucks have one title in their franchise history and that was back in 1971 when Oscar Robertson and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar defeated the Baltimore Bullets.
Fans will be in attendance at all of the games; however, cord cutters can find out how to watch the 2021 NBA Finals below.
The 2021 NBA Finals– Start Times and Channel
The 2021 NBA Finals between the Milwaukee Bucks and Phoenix Suns is scheduled to begin on Tuesday, July 6 with the Suns having home court advantage throughout the series. ABC will be the exclusive home of this year’s Finals. The series could end in 4 games, so games 5-7 are scheduled if necessary.
- Game 1: Bucks at Suns on Tuesday, July 6 at 9 p.m. ET | Phoenix Suns Arena
- Game 2: Bucks at Suns on Thursday, July 8 at 9 p.m. ET | Phoenix Suns Arena
- Game 3: Suns at Bucks on Sunday, July 11 at 8 p.m. ET | Fiserv Forum
- Game 4: Suns at Bucks on Wednesday, July 14 at 9 p.m. ET | Fiserv Forum
- Game 5: Bucks at Suns on Saturday, July 17, 9 p.m. ET | Phoenix Suns Arena
- Game 6: Suns at Bucks on Tuesday, July 20, 9 p.m. ET | Fiserv Forum
- Game 7: Bucks at Suns on Thursday, July 22, 9 p.m. ET | Phoenix Suns Arena
How do I watch the 2021 NBA Finals?
AntennaWeb is a great tool you can use to see what ABC channel is available in your area with an antenna.
Locast: Viewers in over 30 markets served by Locast will also be able to watch on their local ABC for free with the service
Cord cutters can watch the 2021 NBA Finals by subscribing to any streaming service that carries ABC. Choosing from any of these subscription services below has its benefits because there are no hidden fees, you can cancel anytime with most offering a free trial for new subscribers.
YouTube TV: For $65/month, YouTube TV is a great service for watching the NBA Finals on ABC and over 80 other channels. With unlimited Cloud DVR storage, it’s the perfect place to record the moments, highlights, games, sports analyst predictions, and can return to it after the end of the series.
AT&T TV: Subscribers to the AT&TV can watch the NBA Finals on ABC, and over 60 other channels for $69.99/month with their Entertainment package. 20 hours of DVR is included so you won’t miss a moment on the hardwood, and you can record your other favorite shows.
Hulu + Live TV: For $65/month, Hulu + Live TV gives you access to ABC’s coverage of the 2021 NBA Finals. Plus, subscribers get over 65 channels, and access to Hulu’s large library of content including exclusive shows and movies. With 50 hours of Cloud DVR included you’ll be able to record all the shots and historic moments in this year’s Finals.
fuboTV: Perhaps the best sports-orientated streaming service because subscribers can watch ABC, over 130 events in 4K, and 100+ channels, starting at $64.99/month. 250 hours of Cloud DVR means there is plenty of room to save your favorite events.
Vidgo: ABC is part of the 95 channel lineup available on Vidgo. Catch all of the moments to the path of the Larry O’Brien Trophy for only $55/month.
If the Bucks are without Giannis Antetokoumpo for the entire Finals then there is a slim chance of them walking away with the Larry O’Brien Trophy. Bucks guards Jrue Holiday and Kris Middleton will have to pick up their defense and offensive scoring to slow down and match Suns guards Chris Paul and Devin Booker. Even if the Bucks guards outplay the Suns guards then the difference maker will be Suns center Deandre Ayton. Ayton has been playing out of this world throughout the playoffs and putting up the best numbers in his young career. Without Antetokoumpo’s length, the Bucks will be in trouble when it comes to slowing down Ayton, who may end up being Finals MVP. Expect this series to end in 5 games with a Suns win, but the Bucks may be able to stretch it to 6 if Antetokounmpo can contribute.
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