Over the next year, one of the most impressive records in sports history will likely be broken. LeBron James needs just over 1,300 points to become the all-time leading scorer in NBA history by passing Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, who set the mark in 1984 and finished his career with 38 387 points in total.
Moments like these are becoming increasingly rare, as some of the most hallowed records in sports history have been virtually set in stone for decades. As America’s major sports leagues have grown and evolved, some of the most impressive achievements may never be matched again.
To determine the oldest unbreakable sports records, 24/7 Tempo examined NFL, MLB, NBA and NHL data from the Sports Reference family of sites. These single game, single season and career records are set so far beyond the next closest competitor that they are unlikely to ever be broken.
Many of the records on this list are likely to stand the test of time due to changes in the game. MLB pitchers are pitching far fewer games in a typical season now than when the sport started, it therefore seems unlikely that any player will approach the all-time record of 511 wins.
Other presented records may never be broken simply because the record holder’s greatness may never be matched. It’s hard to imagine there would ever be another hockey player with the point guard prowess of “The Great One”, Wayne Gretzky, or a basketball player as dominant as “The Big Dipper”, Wilt Chamberlain. Even the greatest contemporary players fall short of the records they have set. These are the 40 most successful athletes of the 21st century.
Click here to see the oldest unbroken sports records
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