Which teams have come back from down 0–3 in a playoff series?
The Cleveland Indians are one win away from sweeping the Toronto Blue Jays out of the American League Championship Series, and history suggests the Jays' odds of making a comeback are slim.
After beating the Orioles and completing their own sweep of the Rangers in the ALDS, the Blue Jays are facing elimination while the Indians are on the brink of advancing to their first World Series since 1997. If the Jays were to overtake Cleveland and punch a ticket to the Series, they would join an elite group of teams to come back from down 0–3 in a series.
The comeback is harder to complete than you might think. MLB teams have been down 0–3 in a best of seven series 34 times, with just one team coming back to win. Four NHL teams have done it, but an NBA team never has.
The Blue Jays host the Indians at 4 p.m. ET on Tuesday with the hope of keeping their season alive. Here's a look at the teams—in baseball and in other sports—that have rallied from an 0–3 series deficit to advance in the postseason.
2014 Los Angeles Kings
The most recent team to complete the 0–3 comeback was the Los Angeles Kings in 2014. The Kings were facing elimination from the NHL Western Conference Quarterfinals by the San Jose Sharks, but roared all the way back to win the Stanley Cup over the New York Rangers.
2010 Philadelphia Flyers
In 2010, the Flyers were down 0–3 to the Boston Bruins, who failed to close out the sweep and were eliminated from the Eastern Conference Semifinals. The Flyers kept winning, advancing past the Montreal Canadiens in the Conference Finals but ultimately losing to the Chicago Blackhawks in the Stanley Cup Final.
2004 Boston Red Sox
You've probably heard a bit about this team. The Red Sox earned the distinction of the only team in baseball history to come back from 0–3 when they rallied to win the 2004 ALCS. Boston knocked its rival New York Yankees out of the playoffs and went on to win its fifth World Series.
1975 New York Islanders
The Islanders faced elimination by the Pittsburgh Penguins in the 1975 quarterfinals, but the team rallied to knock out the Pens. New York also went down 0–3 to the the Flyers in the semi-finals before coming back to tie the series. They couldn't close out Game 7, though, and the Flyers advanced to win the Cup.
1942 Toronto Maple Leafs
The first team in sports history to complete this feat was the Maple Leafs in the 1942 Stanley Cup Final. They were down 0–3 to the Detroit Red Wings, but won the next four games to become NHL champions.