The most extreme winter sports event is coming back to Buttermilk Mountain in Aspen, Colorado. From January 29 to January 31, 2021, athletes from around the world will compete in gravity-defying sports, marking the start of the epic Winter X Games 25. For years now, ESPN has taken the broadcasting rights of this huge event, which is good for streamers. However, only those in the US can watch it as the channel applies geo-blocking. Nonetheless, bypassing restrictions is what we do best, and here’s how you can watch the Winter X Games 2021 live anywhere.
How to Watch Winter X Games 2021 Live Streaming Online
ESPN Player – Global, Yet Restricted
In 2020, 111,500 attendants went to see the Winter X Games in Aspen. However, this year, due to the pandemic, it’s more likely to be closed to the public, with no spectators in attendance.
The legendary annual event is hosted, produced, and broadcast by ESPN, which means that it’s the only streaming channel that will broadcast the Winter X Games 2021 in the USA.
Unfortunately, the ESPN Player is geo-blocked abroad. That means that American ex-pats currently living abroad won’t be able to watch the extreme winter sports on ESPN.
Geo-blocking is a mechanism used by streaming channels all over the world to protect their copyrights. They use geolocation techniques to determine the users’ whereabouts and act upon that in terms of providing their content.
In this case, ESPN examines your IP address to pinpoint your location. If you’re not holding an American IP address, you’re not watching the X Games, despite the channel’s global availability.
That’s all about to change as this guide will show you exactly how to unblock the channel in your country, and watch the 2021 X Games live online.
X Games 2021 – Global Streaming
In order to unblock US-only channels in the UK, Canada, Australia, or elsewhere, you need an American IP address.
The easiest and most efficient way to get that is by using a Virtual Private Network. It’s a security tool that encrypts a user’s data using military-grade encryption and protects it against hackers and cybercriminals as it travels through a private tunnel.
Also, depending on the server the user connects to, he/she will receive an IP address while cloaking their own in the process.
For example, if you connect to an American server, you’ll receive a US IP address, which technically means that you’re now located in the US (at least for online services).
As a result, you’ll be able to access US-based websites such as ESPN, NBC Sports, and the likes.
Setting up a VPN connection on your device is pretty easy. Popular providers have apps on almost any major operating system out there, and the
steps below will help you with the process:
- First, you must sign up with a VPN provider. So far, ExpressVPN is our top recommendation for ESPN Player.
- Download and install the VPN application on your device. You’ll find apps available on iPhone, iPad, Android, PC, and Mac.
- Activate the VPN application and sign in with your username and password.
- Open the server list and connect to an American server.
- Wait a few seconds to establish a connection then check your new IP address using this tool.
- Now, launch the ESPN Player application on your device.
- Stream the 2021 X Games live wherever you may be.
Based on a strict evaluation process, we have reviewed the best VPN services you can use to watch the Winter X Games 2021 outside the USA.
While ExpressVPN still tops the charts in the industry, there are a lot of other VPNs that did very well during our tests, especially in terms of speed, security, privacy, and unblocking capabilities. Here are the results.
- Best for streaming and privacy
- High speed servers in 160 VPN locations
- Works for Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Amazon Prime Video, and Hulu
- 24/7/ live chat support
- 3 extra months free on annual plan
- UltraHD streaming
- Free Smart DNS proxy
- Unblocks all major streaming services
- Limited time 72% discount
- 7-day free trial
- User-friendly application
- Standalone Smart DNS subscription available
- Extra security features
- Extensions for Firefox and Chrome
- Split-tunneling available
A VPN Alternative – Smart DNS Proxy
Smart DNS proxies are very useful when it comes to bypassing geographic restrictions. Smart DNS allows you to stream online channels such as ESPN outside the USA.
This is made possible because the chunks of your connection that reveal your location get rerouted. Hence, you’ll appear to be accessing WatchESPN inside the US. Smart DNS proxies do have other advantages.
- If you wish to watch online channels from different regions at the same time then Smart DNS is definitely the way to go. Smart DNS gives you access to pan-national streaming services simultaneously. Watch ESPN and BEIN Sports at the same time without having to re-touch your Smart DNS configuration.
- Smart DNS does not encrypt your Internet traffic. As a result, you Internet speed is kept untouched.
- Your local IP address doesn’t change when using Smart DNS. This means you can continue to visit all local websites.
- Smart DNS works well on all streaming devices. Unblock ESPN on iPhone, iPad, Android, Apple TV, Roku, and Xbox without the need to download additional software.
- In case your ISP (Internet Service Provider) uses policies like Transparent Proxies or DNS Hijacking, Smart DNS probably won’t work on any of your devices.
If you’re searching for a Smart DNS service, make sure their list of unblocked channels does contain ESPN. Unlocator‘s list of around 120 streaming channels, for instance, includes ESPN.
Try their free 7-day trial and make sure you check their videos and guides on how to set up your streaming device with Smart DNS.
Winter X Games 2021 – The Sports
This year’s X Games promises to be as legendary as ever as the X Games Aspen 2021 will feature top Men’s and Women’s Ski and Snowboard competitions. Here’s the full schedule:
Friday, January 29
- 2 p.m. – 3 p.m. @XGames Women’s Snowboard Slopestyle
- 4 p.m. – 4:45 p.m. @XGames Women’s Ski Big Air
- 8 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. @XGames Snowboard Knuckle Huck
- 9 p.m. – 10 p.m. @XGames Women’s Ski SuperPipe
- 10:30 p.m. – 12:30 a.m. ESPN2 Men’s Ski SuperPipe, Snowboard Knuckle Huck (Encore)
Saturday, January 30
- 1 p.m. – 6 p.m. ABC Women’s Ski Slopestyle, Men’s Snowboard Slopestyle, Women’s Snowboard Big Air, Women’s Ski Big Air (Encore)
- 8 p.m. – 8:45 p.m. @XGames Men’s Ski Big Air
- 10 p.m. – 12 a.m. ESPN Women’s Snowboard SuperPipe, Men’s Ski Big Air (Encore)Sunday, January 31
- 1 p.m. – 3 p.m. ABC Men’s Ski Slopestyle, Women’s Snowboard Slopestyle (Encore)
- 8:30 p.m. – 11 p.m. ESPN Men’s Snowboard SuperPipe, Men’s Snowboard Big Air, Ski Knuckle Huck
How to Watch 2021 Winter X Games 23 Live – Wrap Up
The Winter X Games 2021 is an event many fans are looking forward to. This year’s competition promises a lot of action and you have the tools to watch them with.
Which category are you interested in? Did we help you unlock ESPN in your country? Let us know in the comments below.