The Sharks, who will begin postseason play later this week in Vancouver, own the longest consecutive-season playoff streak in Bay Area major professional sports history.

San Jose's hockey team has not missed the postseason since 2002-03, a run of nine straight appearances (the 2004-05 season was canceled because of the NHL lockout).

But the longest streaks of the other six teams are worth noting:

49ers

  • The San Francisco 49ers are runners-up to the Sharks in terms of consecutive playoff trips, with an impressive eight straight postseason appearances from 1983-90. The 49ers won three Super Bowls in that stretch.

    RAIDERS

  • The Oakland Raiders are next on the list with six straight playoff appearances. They made the postseason every year from 1972-77, including their first Super Bowl championship team of 1976.

    EARTHQUAKES

  • The soccer Earthquakes are sometimes left out of the Bay Area pro sport discussion. But with five straight playoff teams from 2001-05, they rank ahead of a couple of other franchises in this category. During that time window, the Quakes also won two Major League Soccer titles.

    A'S

  • The Oakland Athletics' best playoff streak consisted of five straight appearances from 1971-75. This was highlighted, of course, by the team's three consecutive World Series championships between 1972 and 1974.


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    WARRIORS

  • The Warriors, perhaps surprisingly, are not last on this list. Their longest streak occurred from 1974-77 when they reached the playoffs in three straight seasons -- and kicked it off with their 1974-75 push to their only NBA championship since moving to the Bay Area in 1962. In their previous city, Philadelphia, the Warriors once made the playoffs six seasons in a row, from 1946-47 through 1951-52.

    GIANTS

  • The Giants have won two of the last three World Series titles but have been the least consistent Bay Area franchise in reaching the playoffs. Their longest "streak" is two. That occurred in 2002-03 when the Giants went to the postseason in back-to-back years.

    Contact Mark Purdy at mpurdy@mercurynews.com. Follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/MercPurdy.