Unbreakable sports records

Now that Lance Armstrong has made history, I think this is as good a time as any to fire up the old records-that’ll-stand-the-test-of-time debate again. (Oh yeah, I did a search, and it came up empty.) I haven’t done anything with my website in a while, so I figured this would be a nice addition.

Just to avoid arguments…well, unneccsary arguments…I’ll split them off into two categores, records that look unshakable right now, and the “pending” cases, where someone actually has a chance at it.

All right. Definites, all from memory:
Most consecutive Tour De France wins: 7, Lance Armstrong
Most consecutive MLB games with a base hit: 56, Joe Dimaggio
Most seasons between two World Series wins: 86, Boston Red Sox
Most career stolen bases: ???, Ricky Henderson
Most career home runs for one team: 733, Hank Aaron
Most NBA championships by two players and a coach on the same team: 6, Michael Jordan, Scottie Pippen, Phil Jackson (if Horace Grant stayed, it would be three players…never really understood why he was released)
Most points in an NBA game, most rebounds in an NBA game: 100/55, Wilt Chamberlain
Most men’s college basketball titles with one non-championship year: 10, UCLA (and did anyone else find it weird and a little disgusting that during the last tournament, virtually everyone on this board who wanted to rip on Duke became a bandwagon UCLA fan??)
Longest punt: 97 yards, Steve O’Neal (went 98 yards, returned 1)
Biggest margin of victory in Super Bowl: 45 points (55-10), San Francisco 49ers…don’t remember the year

And a whole bunch of Wayne Gretzky records I’ll research when I have the time.

Most majors, most top-2 finishes* in majors: 18/37, Jack Nicklaus
Tiger Woods is the only person who has a realistic crack at these records, and he may be the only person who’ll ever have a crack at them. Expect the pressure to mount when he gets close; the weight of the world will be on him, and age will have caught up to him just a bit.

Most sumo championships: 32, Taiho
Most makuuchi wins: 807, Chiyonofuji
For a while, it looked for certain that Takanohana would not only beat these records, but demolish them. Now Asashoryu looks like the man. This year, he’s 56-4 (and one of those losses was on a very dubious call) and has won all four tournaments. He looks utterly unstoppable; if he can keep it up for a couple more years or so, his breaking these records could be a given.

Most Indy 500 wins: 4, three drivers?
With open-wheel fields as diluted as they are now, it’s almost inconceviable that there won’t be someone who takes advantage and dominates this event. Thus far, however, no one’s really stepped up. I’ll give this 20 more years before I write it off as unbreakable.

Most consecutive Americas Cup wins: 22?, USA
Decade after decade of utter dominance. With the state of the sport now, it’s never coming close to happening again.

Most Wimbledon women’s singles titles: 9, Martina Navratilova
Steffi Graf never came close. Venus Williams, a superb grass court player, will be lucky to retire with 6. For anyone to dominate one of the most prestigious tournaments in world, on the most unforgiving surface in the sport, and with a powerful rival nearly all the way…there’s only one word for that. Mastery.

This’ll do for a start. I’m sure I made a gazillion errors, so feel free to correct anything that needs correcting.

  • Is there a term for this? I know the horse racing term is “quinella”, but I’d like somthing a little more, well, generic.

Cal Ripken Jr’s consecutive game streak is safe for eternity. When the streak was going on, I read a newspaper article about a player (don’t recall the name), who was referred to as the “Anti-Ripken”. He once called in to say he couldn’t play that day because he slept on his eyelid wrong!

In that vein, I don’t think we’ll see anybody threaten Brett Favre’s consecutive starts for a quarterback anytime soon. 205 regular game starts, which goes up to 225 when playoff games are added in.

Florence Griffith-Joyner set two world records in 1988 which have not only stood for 17 years but haven’t been approached. Her 100 metres record of 10.49 seconds in the 1988 US Olympic trials beat the existing record by more than a quarter of a second, or a staggering 2.5 metres. Today, in an event where margins of one hundredth of a second are the norm, she still stands 0.16 seconds (or around 1.5 metres) ahead of second-ranked Marion Jones.

Her 200 metres world record of 21.34 seconds (set at the Olympic Games in Seoul) has been equally untouchable, an incredible 0.28 seconds (again about 2.5 metres) ahead of Marion Jones.

The US Americas Cup streak. 25 consecutive victories, for a collected 132 years of dominance.

Secretariat has a few standouts in racing history: winning the Belmont Stakes by 31 lengths, I doubt that will ever be equaled.

On autopsy it was found that his heart was much larger than the average horse’s just like Lance Armstrong’s.

RedSox record is very breakable, just as soon as either Chicago team wins. Oh wait I see what you mean. :wink:

Cy Young’s Win total of 511 is unassailable without the game of baseball completely changing.
Same for Walter Johnson’s Career Shutouts . 110 total.
Jack Chesbro’s single season Wins. 41 in 1904

Sorry, old bean, but Flo Jo was a known steroid cheat.

If you’re going to cite PED cheats, include Ben Johnson’s Olympic performance. I’ll try to find the back story on her, but do a quick search and you’ll find my reference to her in an earlier post, maybe 12 months ago.

BTW, it’s generally accepted that most sprinters today are cheating. Again, check my post from way back when.

Can we call Lance’s record unbreakable when he just set it? The old record was five. It’s remarkable, but if the old record was two or three, it’d seem more unbreakable.

As jrfranchi hinted, the Cubs haven’t won the World Series since 1908, and the White Sox not since 1917. So that record might fall as early as this year.

Cumberland-Georgia Tech game in 1916(?) with Tech taking home the victory by 222-0 under Coach Heisman.

No need for an apology - I wasn’t her agent or anything.


The Cubs will win it eventually, and this “record” will be broken.

Why do you add the “one team” part? That seems needlessly restrictive. Either way, this record is not unbreakable. Barry Bonds could still do it.

This is another completely random stat that doesn’t say much.

It was 1990 against the Denver Broncos. I don’t see a reason why this couldn’t happen again.

I would like to add a few.

Career wins for a pitcher: 511 by Cy Young
Wins for a pitcher in a season: 59 by Old Hoss Radbourn
Most hotdogs eaten in 12 minutes: 53 by Takeru Kobayashi
Highest career batting average: .366 by Ty Cobb
Most career no-hitters: 7 by Nolan Ryan
Most consecutive wins in college basketball: 88 by John Wooden
Most goals in a World Cup: 13 by Juste Fontaine
Most KO’s: 141 by Archie Moore
Most basketball wins in a season: 72 by the Chicago Bulls
Most career strikeouts: 5714 by Nolan Ryan

The 100-point game by Wilt Chamberlain in beatable if it is planned. I think somebody like Shaq, or Kobe could do it if his team really wanted him to. It’s not impossible, just impractical for one guy to try to do that.

Byron Nelson’s 11 consecutive tour wins comes to mind. These days players don’t play in every event, the field is much larger, the courses are more difficult, there are more events, the pressure is greater with global attention being paid to the sport, etc.

I don’t see Tiger or anyone else coming close. Put in perspective, going from his first victory last season at the Buick Invitational, Tiger would have had to go on and win, in order:

Bob Hope
FBR Open
AT&T Pebble Beach
Nissan Open
WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship
Chrysler Classic at Tuscon
Honda Classic
Bay Hill Invitational
The Players Championship

Instead, last year he won the Buick and then the Doral, eight events later. The person with the most consecutive wins last year was Vijay Singh, with three.

Because star players move around more frequently now. Alex Rodriguez may end up with the all-time home run record, but he’s not going to hit 734 with the Yankees. Bonds may get more than 755 - here’s hoping he doesn’t! - but he won’t hit 733 with the Giants. His first 176 homers came with Pittsburgh, and no way is he going to play long enough to get to 910.

Valid Stat but not a major one. Bonds got 176 Homers in Pitt. So the Aaron record would be valid and A-Rod is already on 3rd team.
Problem is no one talks about most HR’s for a single team except as a blue moon stat.

you beat me by seconds :smack:

Don Bradman’s Test batting average of 99.94 will never be approached. The next highest career figures are 60.97, 60.83 and 60.73. No current player averages over 60. Test Records

Sorry, the “either way” part was a typo. I’m aware Barry Bonds didn’t always play for the Giants. However, the fact that stars move around means nothing with regard to that record. It’s like quoting the most homeruns for a switch hitter, or the lowest ERA in the first round of the playoffs. It is meaningless, especially when Aaron is the unqualified leader in that category.

Most consecutive no-hitters: 2 by Johnny Vander Meer in 1938
There’s a very remote chance that someone will tie Vander Meer, but the chances that anyone can pitch three consecutive no-hitters is virtually nil.