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Comparing Indians' 21 straight wins to the top streaks in other sports

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You can’t stop the Cleveland Indians.

Thanks to the team’s 5-3 win over the Detroit Tigers on Wednesday, Cleveland cemented its 21st consecutive victory to set a new American League record and overtake the 2002 “Moneyball” Oakland Athletics. The Indians also matched the 1935 Chicago Cubs‘ mark of 21 consecutive victories, which, depending on how you feel about tie games and the 1916 New York Giants, has a case to be considered the true all-time consecutive wins record.

But while the Indians are actively rewriting baseball’s history books, how does their record stretch hold up against the longest streaks in other sports?

Here’s how it compares to the best winning streaks in basketball, football, soccer, and hockey:

Basketball

NBA

Los Angeles Lakers: 31 consecutive wins


(Photo courtesy: Getty Images)

Start date End date
Nov. 5 1971 Jan. 7 1972

Wilt Chamberlain, Jerry West, and Elgin Baylor spearheaded one of the greatest Lakers teams of all time during the 1971-72 season. For nearly two months, they won by an average of 16 points before going on to claim the franchise’s first title in Los Angeles.

NCAA

UConn women’s basketball: 111 consecutive wins


(Photo courtesy: Getty Images)

Start date End date
Nov. 23 2014 March 31 2017

For three years, the women’s Huskies team was unparalleled in college basketball. Led by eventual WNBA No. 1 overall pick Breanna Stewart, UConn won three straight national championships before being infamously upset by Mississippi State in the Final Four this year.

On the men’s side, UCLA won 88 games in a row from Jan. 30, 1971 to Jan. 19, 1974.

Football

NFL

New England Patriots: 21 consecutive wins


(Photos courtesy: Action Images)

Start date End date
Oct. 5 2003 Oct. 31 2004

Love him or hate him, Tom Brady guided the Patriots to an emphatic 21 straight victories from Week 5 of the 2003 season to Week 8 in 2004, winning the second Super Bowl of his career in the process. Even after the Pittsburgh Steelers snapped their streak, Brady and the Patriots went on to three-peat as Super Bowl champions anyway.

NCAA

Oklahoma Sooners: 47 consecutive victories


(Photos courtesy: Action Images)

Start date End date
Oct. 10 1953 Nov. 16 1957

In half a century, no college football squad has come close to dethroning the Sooners’ incredible four-year stretch in which they bested the Washington’s 40-game streak from 1908-14 and won two national titles. Since then, the Toledo side of the early 1970s has come the closest, though the Rockets mustered just 35 straight wins.

Soccer

International

Germany: 15 consecutive victories (in competitive games)


(Photo courtesy: Action Images)

Start date End date
July 10 2010 June 28 2012

Though it began with their third-place game in the 2010 World Cup, “Die Mannschaft” were unstoppable from then on, finishing a perfect 10-0-0 in qualifying for Euro 2012. They added another four victories in the tournament itself before being bounced by Italy in the semi-final.

Club

Bayern Munich: 19 consecutive victories


(Photo courtesy: Action Images)

Start date End date
Oct. 19 2013 March 29 2014

Among the top five European leagues (England, Spain, Italy, Germany, and France) the Bavarian giant strung together the most consecutive wins in a domestic campaign during Pep Guardiola’s first season at the helm. Bayern outscored opponents 64-10 in the 19-game stretch and went on to win the league by 19 points, coincidentally.

Hockey

NHL

Pittsburgh Penguins: 17 consecutive victories


(Photo courtesy: Getty Images)

Start date End date
March 9 1993 April 10 1993

The Penguins’ 17-game streak may never be matched again in the NHL. Captain and future Hall of Famer Mario Lemieux, who returned just two games prior after missing two months battling Hodgkin’s lymphoma, had 51 points in the 17 wins and went on to win the Hart Memorial Trophy.

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