There are many records and streaks that are unlikely to ever be broken. Joe DiMaggio’s 56-game hitting streak and Wilt Chamberlain’s 100 point game are records that continue to stand the test of time and the 1972 Lakers winning 33 consecutive games is in that same category of records.
On January 7, 1972 the Los Angeles Lakers defeated the Atlanta Hawks 134-90 for their 33rd consecutive victory, a record that still stands as the longest win streak in professional sports.
Jim McMillan and Gail Goodrich led the way on that night scoring 26 and 23 points respectively and the defense held Hall-of-Fame point guard ‘Pistol’ Pete Maravich to only 17 points.
This 1972 team is considered to be one of the best of all-time and was led by a trio of Hall-of-Famers in Wilt Chamberlain, Jerry West, and Gail Goodrich. Coincidentally, the streak began immediately following the retirement of another Hall of Famer, Elgin Baylor.
These Lakers would finish with a 69-13 record, another record that would stand until 1996. They dominated in the playoffs, defeating the New York Knicks four games to one and won the Lakers first championship in the city of Los Angeles.
Even though the streak would be broken the next game by Lew Alcindor and the Milwaukee Bucks, the streak still stands as one of the greatest records in all of sports. There have been a couple of teams who threatened to break the record, most recently the Miami Heat won 27 games last season and the Houston Rockets won 22 in 2008, but ultimately they came up short.
One of the greatest teams ever, completing one of the greatest streaks ever, this week we remember the 1972 Lakers for their unmatched 33 game win streak.
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