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(Credit: PhotoProCorp, Shutterstock / PhotoProCorp)

The 2018-2019 NBA season opens Oct. 16, 2018 and you don't want to miss a second of the on-court and off-court action. Sure, you can watch clips online or listen as your friends or coworkers relive the best moments from last night's game around the water cooler, complete with reenactments -- think shooting crumpled up pieces of paper into the circular file cabinet. Or you can catch all the highs and lows from the National Basketball Association's 73rd season in real time and on the go with our six best apps to stream NBA basketball games live.

SEE: Extend the NBA season with the best iOS sports games

1. NBA: Official App

The official NBA (Android, iPhone) app lets monthly or annual NBA League Pass holders watch the NBA live games or view the full replays when it's more convenient. Basketball fans will also get breaking news and game highlights, as well as scores, stats, standings, and schedules for their favorite teams in the app. Cable subscribers can also watch NBA TV in the NBA app. Prices for NBA League Pass range from $17.99 per month for one team to $249.99 per year for all teams without the annoyance of commercials.

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2. NextVR App

Leveraging the power of virtual reality, the highly immersive NextVR App (Android, iOS) app puts you in the front row, courtside, and backstage at must-watch NBA games this season. But why decide on one when you can watch up to 13 live NBA League Pass Games at once on a theater-size screen? Streaming live events or replaying videos from your mobile device or in a Cardboard viewer is easy with the app. Or download the NextVR App for Gear VR, Daydream, and HTC Vive headsets for an even more immersive experience. You can also watch NextVR content though the Oculus Rift headset using the Venues app. An NBA League Pass is required to enjoy these immersive experiences.

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3. ESPN

Select your favorite teams, such as the Golden State Warriors, Cleveland Cavaliers, and Boston Celtics in the official ESPN (Android, iOS) sports app and stream the live NBA games or get the latest scores and most exciting highlights you most care about from ESPN sports channels -- ESPN, ESPN2, ESPN3, ESPNU, SEC Network, SEC Network Plus, ESPNews ESPN Deportes, and Longhorn Network -- no matter where you are. You can also listen to live games on ESPN Radio in the app. Subscribe to ESPN+ for $4.99 per month or $49.99 per year to catch thousands of live and on-demand games and shows in the ESPN app.

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4. WatchESPN

The WatchESPN (Android, iOS) app brings live streaming sports feeds of NBA regular season, NBA Playoffs, and NBA Finals games as well as related shows, news, highlights, and commentary from ESPN channels, including ESPN, ESPN2, ESPN3, ESPNU, ESPNews, ESPN Deportes, SEC Network, SEC Network +, Longhorn Network, ACC Network Extra, ESPN Goal Line, ESPN Buzzer Beater, and ESPN Bases Loaded to your smartphone or tablet so long as you pay for ESPN through a cable or satellite TV provider.

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5. Watch TNT

Watch TNT (Android, iOS) enables cable TV and satellite TV subscribers to stream NBA games on their phones and tablets. Just download the app and sign in with your TV provider to watch the NBA games on TNT on the go. If you're in a rush to watch or just want to test the streaming service out before you sign up for a cable or satellite TV account, know you can watch 10 minutes of live TV or five minutes of on-demand TV for free before you buy.

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6. TuneIn

Or if you're in the car or at work, you can listen to live play-by-play games on TuneIn (Android, iOS)'s sports radio using your smartphone or tablet. You can also tune in to TuneIn using your smart home device like Google Home and Amazon Echo. Subscribe to TuneIn Premium to get every NBA game all season long.

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Joshua is an editor for CNET's Download.com. He covers the mobile tech and apps that power our lives and interviews celebrities about their favorite apps. Previously, he worked as an editor at Healthline and Gay.com and as a contributing writer for Mac Directory, MacAddict, SF Weekly, SF Examiner, and SF Chronicle.