A Look at the Longest Losing Streaks of all Time

Published on December 30th, 2023 2:57 pm EST
Written By: Dave Manuel

The biggest losing streaks in sports. The Detroit Pistons recently set a record for longest losing streak in a single NBA season, as they lost their 28th game in a row.

With one more loss, the Pistons will also have sole possession of the longest NBA losing streak when including multiple seasons, as the Philadelphia 76ers lost 28 games over the course of two years.

This stat begs the question - what are the longest losing streaks in the history of professional sports?

Let's take a look:

NBA - As mentioned, the Detroit Pistons currently hold the record for most consecutive losses in a single season (28), while the Philadelphia 76ers also lost 28 games over the course of two partial seasons.

NFL - The Chicago Cardinals lost 29 straight games between 1942 and 1945, though most people don't consider this the official record, as this period of time included the merging of two franchises.

The official record is thought to be held by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, who lost 26 games over the course of the 1976 and 1977 seasons.

MLB - the Louisville Cardinals lost 26 straight games during the 1889 season.

In modern times, the longest losing streak belongs to the Baltimore Orioles, who lost 21 straight games during the 1988 regular season.

NHL - the record is shared by the 2003-04 Pittsburgh Penguins and 2021 Buffalo Sabres, who both lost 18 straight games.

English Premier League - Norwich City has lost 16 straight games in the Premier League TWICE (2019, 2021)

Division 1 College Football - The Northwestern Wildcats lost 34 straight games between 1979 and 1982.

Tennis - Vince Spadea holds the dubious record of having lost 21 consecutive matches on the ATP Tour between October of 1999 and June of 2000


Losing streaks in professional sports are fantastic studies in psychology, as it can seem nearly impossible for a team to break a losing streak while they are in the midst of it.

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