What’s the Longest Winning Streak in Any Sport?
Sustained excellence in sports is the enduring mark of a champion , which is why winning streaks are so fascinating for fans.
The longest winning streak in an individual sport belongs to Pakistani squash legend Jahangir Khan. A six-time world champion, Khan was dominant in the 1980s –he won 555 consecutive matches from 1981 to 1986.
But when the length of a winning streak is measured in years, instead of in individual contests, two other legendary athletes have an argument for longest winning streak. Edwin Moses dominated the 400-meter hurdles in track and field for nearly a decade, winning 122 straight races from 1977 to 1987. Moses won the Olympic gold medal in the 400 in 1984 (the U.S. boycotted the 1980 Moscow Olympics) and broke his own world record four times along the way.
Boxer Julio-Cesar Chavez was the victor in 87 consecutive fights between 1981 and 1993, the longest unbeaten streak – 13 years – in boxing history.
In professional team sports, the longest winning streak belongs to the NBA's Los Angeles Lakers. The legendary 1971-1972 squad, featuring Hall of Famers Jerry West, Gail Goodrich and Wilt Chamberlain, won 33 straight games, en route to the league title.
The NFL's longest win streak belongs to the New England Patriots, who won 21 games in a row over the 2003 and 2004 seasons.
The Chicago Cubs may be known as baseballâs lovable losers for their 102-year World Series drought, but the team also owns the sport's longest winning streak. The Cubbies won 21 straight games in 1935.
It should be noted that the then-New York Giants won 26 games in a row in 1916. Technically, the team had a tie game in the middle of the streak, which interrupted the winning streak. However, Major League Baseball doesn’t include ties in its official record, and therefore recognizes the Giants’ streak as the longest.
Perhaps the most impressive winning streaks in team sports belong to college programs.
UCLA men’s basketball team, under the legendary coach John Wooden, won 88 consecutive games from 1971to 1974.
Right behind them is University of Connecticut’s women’s basketball team, which is currently on a 78-game win streak that just netted the squad their second consecutive NCAA championship.
The Oklahoma Sooners football team under coach Bud Wilkinson won 47 consecutive games from 1953 to 1957.
All of those streaks pale in comparison to the level of excellence reached by the De La Salle high school football team. The California private Catholic school chalked up 151 victories in a row from 1992 to 2003 – the team was undefeated for 11 years.
It's not out of the question to suggest that De La Salle's winning streak may never be challenged in team sports, at any level of competition.
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