IF THE CAVS lose to the Warriors, LeBron James will have lost five Finals series and won two, including three straight defeats. Meanwhile, if Phil Mickelson is the runner-up at this week's U.S. Open at Oakmont, he'll have 11 seconds in majors. You have to be pretty good to be No. 2 so often, but is this a list you want to be on?
The Golden Bear is famous for his record 18 major titles, but he had even more near misses in his Hall of Fame career.
Elgin Baylor and Jerry West
The Lakers greats lost eight NBA Finals each (seven as teammates). West won it all with L.A. in '72, but Baylor had retired nine games into the season.
Mr. Hockey's Red Wings lofted Lord Stanley's Cup four times but lost it seven times. Some disappointment was inevitable in the late great Howe's 26-year NHL career.
Elston Howard and Pee Wee Reese
Reese and the Dodgers won once—over Howard's Yankees in 1955. Howard won four rings in pinstripes but lost five and another with the Red Sox in '67.
Cornelius Bennett and Glenn Parker
Bennett and Parker played on the Bills teams that lost four Super Bowls, from 1991 to '94. Bennett lost a fifth time with the Falcons in '99, and Parker with the Giants in 2001.