Washington Wizards, Orlando Magic have the shortest longest win steaks in NBA history

As noted by NBC Sports Washington’s Chase Hughes, the Wizards, along with Magic, are the only NBA teams to have never won at least 10 games in a row at any point in their history. Orlando at least has the excuse of being one of the newer teams in the league, despite the fact that the Miami Heat, launched as an expansion franchise in 1988, a year before Magic, has nine winning streaks of at least 10 games, including a 27 The Wizards were founded as Chicago Packers in 1961-62.

The Spurs, who entered the league six years after the Wizards, have 22 winning streaks of at least 10 games, and all of them have appeared since 1993, according to the Basketball Reference. The Lakers have 29 winning streaks of at least 10 games in their 73 seasons, including an NBA record streak of 33 games during the 1971-72 campaign that culminated in one of the franchise’s 17 titles. The Boston Celtics have the most double-digit winning streaks at 32. The league’s youngest expansion team, the New Orleans Pelicans, founded in 2002 as the New Orleans Hornets, have three 10-game winning streaks in 19 seasons.

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There it is, Wizards fans: only six franchises have had fewer double-digit loss streaks, led by the Lakers and Spurs with two each. The Wizards have suffered six losses in at least 10 games in franchise history, with the longest (16 games) being recorded in the 2010 season.

Here’s a closer look at the four winning streaks in nine games in Wizards history, the first two of which came when the franchise was set in Baltimore, and how they ended.

2001-02

Washington’s last winning streak in nine games came in Michael Jordan’s first season. On December 22, 2001, Jordan drilled a show jumper over Latrell Spreewell with a 3.2 second lead to finally give the Wizards the lead in an 87-86 win against the Knicks in sold-out Madison Square Garden.

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“I got promoted again tonight in New York, one of my favorite places,” said Jordan after the ninth straight win in Washington.

Jordan made 11 of 22 shots and finished the game with 26 points. Tyronn Lue and Brendan Haywood added 12 and 11 points, respectively, from the bank as the Wizards caught up from a 14-point deficit in the first quarter. Four days later, the Wizards lost to the Hornets, 99-93 in Charlotte, despite 28 points from Jordan.

A loss in seven games in February dashed Washington’s post-season hopes. The team finished 37-45, five games from a playoff spot.

Residence: 6 | Street: 3 | Average Margin: 9.9

1978-79

After their first NBA title, the Bullets opened the 1978/79 season 7-7 before scooping nine straight wins. Wes Unseld scored the winning basket in the series’ final win, a sneaky shot five seconds ahead to beat New Orleans Jazz (117-115) on the road.

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Washington finished the regular season 54-28 and reached the NBA Finals for a second year in a row, but lost five games against the Seattle SuperSonics.

Residence: 4 | Street: 5 | Average Margin: 17.8

1969-70

Baltimore ran its winning streak to nine with three street wins against the Lakers, Suns and Warriors. Earl Monroe hit a team high of 29 points in Bullets’ Thanksgiving Day victory in San Francisco, while Jack Marin added 28 points.

The series ended two nights later with a home defeat of 121-106 against the Celtics, who had defeated the Bullets two weeks earlier at the Boston Garden. Baltimore’s strong start to the season was overshadowed by the Knicks, who opened the year with wins in 23 of their first 24 games, beating the Bullets in the Eastern Conference semifinals en route to their first NBA title.

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Residence: 3 | Street: 5 | Neutral: 1 | Average Margin: 10.4

1968-69

Baltimore improved to 27-7 with their ninth straight win, a 118-112 triumph over the SuperSonics in Seattle at Christmas. Unseld, who was a rookie, had 23 points and 20 rebounds, while Monroe led the Bullets with 25 points. Six of Baltimore’s nine wins during the run came against losing teams.

Gene Shue’s squad had captured its winning streak the next evening in Philadelphia when the 76ers defeated Baltimore for the 14th consecutive year, dating back to February 11, 1967. The Bullets finished the 57-25 season and topped the Eastern Division but were swept by the Knicks in the first round of the playoffs.

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Residence: 6 | Street: 2 | Neutral: 1 | Average Margin: 9/11

While the Wizards franchise hasn’t had 10 straight wins in 60 years, DC is well represented on the list of the longest regular season winning streaks in NBA history. The Washington Capitols, founding members of the Basketball Association of America, had won 15 and 17 games during their first season in 1946/47 under coach Red Auerbach. The Capitols won 20 consecutive regular season competitions in the 1947-48 and 1948-49 seasons, making it the fifth-longest series in the league’s history. The franchise was closed in the 1950/51 season.