Watch The 2021 Stanley Cup NHL Playoffs Free From Anywhere With a VPN

Ice hockey rink and fans cheering

The 2021 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs have arrived. There are 16 playoff teams in total. Due to restrictions and changes in the NHL game structure, the league has had to realign which means that for the first two rounds of the 2021 Stanley Cup Playoffs, games will be intra-divisional. Once the two rounds are completed, four teams will remain where the best regular-season team will face the one with the worst record. The remaining two teams will face off in the semifinal series, from where the winner will advance to the Finals. As we know, the Stanley Cup always favors a balanced team, and last year the Tampa Bay Lightning won the coveted cup. This year though, it may be The Golden Knights.

When it comes to watching the NHL, there are always some difficulties due to the broadcasters putting restrictions on sports streaming services (applying regional blocks). This means that you can be affected by this in multiple ways e.g. if you live or find yourself outside of the U.S. or Canada, and not only that but you can be subject to location-based viewing blockage even if you are a paying subscriber of or ESPN+.

Now, don’t fret that you won’t catch this season’s NHL action. This is where a VPN comes in to save the day! A VPN will help you solve the issue of restrictions, enabling you to live-stream the NHL from wherever you are. With a few simple clicks on your VPN, you can view region-specific live NHL action that you would otherwise not be able to.

Where Will The 2021 NHL Stanley Cup Be Broadcasted?

The 2021 NHL Stanley Cup will be broadcast in the US on;

  • NBC
  • NBC Sports Network
  • CNBC
  • USA
  • NHL Network

While in Canada, the broadcast list goes as follows;

  • TVA Sports
  • CBC Sports
  • Sportsnet
  • RDS
  • TSN
  • NHL Live (the Canadian equivalent of NHL.TV)

The following subscription-based stream options are also available;

  • fuboTV
  • Hulu+ Live TV
  • YouTube TV
  • Sling TV

Another great option would be that fans subscribe to NHL Live‘s monthly $29.99 service, which has the benefit of allowing you to pay for the one month and then cancel (as opposed to the Full Season Pass). This service also covers ‘out of market‘ games, meaning all the possible games. NHL fans that hold cable TV subscription packages will be able to catch the games with their existing subscriptions online, although using a VPN and connecting to the local server (if you are outside the region) will be required if you experienced regional blocking. For those that want to catch the action for free on live stream, or don’t have an existing subscription, let’s look at that in the section below.

Note: It is also important to understand that watching the NHL worldwide may be subject to NHL broadcast blackouts, which can also be circumvented via a VPN!

How to Watch 2021 NHL Playoffs Free On a Live-Stream

We have done the research and found out that the 2021 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs will be live-streamed on Canada’s CBC Sports stream. Even though every moment of the Playoffs may not be covered by this free service, it is still a great option for those not wanting to subscribe to a paid service like the one we mentioned above. By utilizing a VPN, we will show you in the next step how you can access Canada’s Canada-only CBC Sports stream and watch NHL Playoff action. A VPN will allow you to do this by changing your device’s IP address.

Step-by-Step Instructions on How To Watch The 2021 NHL Stanley Cup For Free With a VPN

Below are step-by-step instructions on how to keep up with the 2021 NHL Playoffs via Canada’s CBC Sports stream for free by using ExpressVPN.

  1. Select a premium VPN with good unblocking ability. We’ve found that ExpressVPN works well in this case, and has a 30-day money-back guarantee to boot. Learn how to get a free trial of ExpressVPN.
  2. ExpressVPN
    Our pick
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    3 months for free with a one-year subscription
    • Very easy to use VPN
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    • 3000+ servers in 94 countries
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  3. Please acquire an ExpressVPN subscription for your specific device by visiting their website.
  4. Download and install the VPN app. ExpressVPN’s website has simple steps on how to do this.
  5. Open your VPN app and connect to a server located in Canada.
  6. Go to the website of CBC’s Gem service (
  7. Signing up with CBC is quick and easy, located in the upper right corner.
  8. After signing up, please visit ( or click on ‘Live’.
  9. You will now be able to watch select live events from the 2021 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs for free.
  10. Consult CBC’s schedule for when to tune in.
  11. Enjoy the Stanley Cup!

2021 NHL Division Playoff Bracket

As for the NHL Playoffs, these are the current brackets:

First Round

Carolina Hurricanes (C1) vs. Nashville Predators (C4)4-2
Florida Panthers (C2) vs. Tampa Bay Lightning (C3)2-4
Pittsburgh Penguins (E1) vs. New York Islanders (E4)2-4
Washington Capitals (E2) vs. Boston Bruins (E3)1-4
Toronto Maple Leafs (N1) vs. Montreal Canadiens (N4)3-4
Edmonton Oilers (N2) vs. Winnipeg Jets (N3)0-4
Colorado Avalanche (W1) vs. St. Louis Blues (W4)4-0
Vegas Golden Knights (W2) vs. Minnesota Wild (W3)4-3

Second Round

Carolina Hurricanes (C1) vs. Tampa Bay Lightning (C3)1-3
New York Islanders (E4) vs. Boston Bruins (E3)2-2
Montreal Canadiens (N4) vs. Winnipeg Jets (N3)3-0
Colorado Avalanche (W1) vs. Vegas Golden Knights (W2)2-2

Stanley Cup Semifinals

TBD (Hurricanes/Lightning vs. Islanders/Bruins)
TBD (Canadiens/Jets vs. Avalanche/Golden Knights)

Stanley Cup Finals

Tech researcher & communications specialist
Mirza has an education background in Global Communications, has worked in advertising, marketing, journalism and television over the years while living in several different countries. He is now working to consolidate news and outreach at, while in his free time he likes to work on documentary projects, read about sociology and write about world events.