The Top 30 Sports Documentaries on Netflix

Need ideas on what to watch next on Netflix? Like sports? If you’re a sports enthusiast like me and you’re looking for some compelling stories to watch, Netflix has a plethora of options to choose from. Let me give you 30 suggestions in the sports doc category.

Here are some of the most fascinating sports documentaries available on Netflix:

“The Last Dance” (2020)

Undoubtedly one of the most talked-about sports documentaries in recent memory, “The Last Dance” chronicles the career of basketball legend Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls dynasty of the 1990s. With unparalleled access to behind-the-scenes footage and in-depth interviews, this 10-part series offers an intimate look at Jordan’s rise to superstardom and the tumultuous journey to his sixth NBA championship.

“Formula 1: Drive to Survive” (2019-present)

For fans of high-speed racing, “Formula 1: Drive to Survive” provides a thrilling glimpse into the world of Formula 1, featuring the intense rivalries, dramatic moments, and personal stories of the drivers and teams. With stunning cinematography and edge-of-your-seat action, this series offers an adrenaline-fueled ride for both motorsport enthusiasts and casual viewers alike.

“Cheer” (2020)

In “Cheer,” viewers are invited into the high-stakes world of competitive cheerleading as they follow the journey of the Navarro College Bulldogs cheerleading team. Through sweat, tears, and triumphs, this gripping series offers a behind-the-scenes look at the dedication, determination, and camaraderie that define the sport of cheerleading at the collegiate level.

“The Battered Bastards of Baseball” (2014)

This captivating documentary tells the remarkable story of the Portland Mavericks, an independent minor league baseball team that captured the hearts of fans in the 1970s. Led by actor Bing Russell, the Mavericks defied the odds and challenged the established baseball hierarchy, leaving an indelible mark on the sport and inspiring underdogs everywhere.

“The Dawn Wall” (2017)

In “The Dawn Wall,” viewers are taken on a breathtaking journey as rock climbers Tommy Caldwell and Kevin Jorgeson attempt to scale the imposing Dawn Wall of El Capitan in Yosemite National Park. With stunning visuals and heart-pounding moments, this documentary showcases the indomitable human spirit and the relentless pursuit of greatness.

“The Carter Effect” (2017)

Explore the cultural phenomenon of basketball superstar Vince Carter during his tenure with the Toronto Raptors in “The Carter Effect.” Through interviews with players, coaches, and fans, this documentary celebrates Carter’s impact on the city of Toronto and his lasting legacy in the world of basketball.

“Sunderland ‘Til I Die” (2018-present)

Delve into the world of English football with “Sunderland ‘Til I Die,” a documentary series that follows the trials and tribulations of Sunderland AFC, a once-proud club struggling to reclaim its former glory. With its raw emotion and unflinching portrayal of the highs and lows of professional football, this series offers a compelling look at the passion and dedication of fans.

“Undefeated” (2011)

Winner of the Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature, “Undefeated” tells the inspiring story of a high school football team in Memphis as they strive for a winning season amidst personal struggles and adversity. Through the guidance of their dedicated coach, the team learns valuable lessons about teamwork, perseverance, and the power of belief.

“Icarus” (2017)

“Icarus” starts as a personal experiment by filmmaker Bryan Fogel to explore the world of doping in sports but quickly evolves into a geopolitical thriller. Through a series of unexpected twists and turns, Fogel uncovers shocking revelations about the widespread corruption and deception within the world of competitive cycling, highlighting the urgent need for reform.

“The Playbook” (2020)

In this inspiring series, legendary coaches share their strategies for success both on and off the field. Featuring insights from coaches such as José Mourinho, Jill Ellis, and Patrick Mouratoglou, “The Playbook” offers valuable lessons in leadership, motivation, and teamwork, making it a must-watch for athletes, coaches, and aspiring leaders alike.

“Athlete A” (2020)

“Athlete A” exposes the systemic abuse within USA Gymnastics and the shocking scandal surrounding team doctor Larry Nassar. Through interviews with survivors and investigative journalists, this powerful documentary sheds light on the culture of silence and complicity that allowed Nassar to prey on young gymnasts for decades, ultimately leading to his downfall and the quest for justice.

“Team Foxcatcher” (2016)

“Team Foxcatcher” delves into the tragic story of Olympic wrestling champion Mark Schultz and his relationship with eccentric millionaire John du Pont. Through archival footage and interviews, this documentary explores the dark underbelly of the sport of wrestling and the devastating consequences of unchecked ambition.

“The Game Changers” (2018)

“The Game Changers” challenges the traditional notions of strength, performance, and nutrition in sports by exploring the benefits of a plant-based diet. Through interviews with elite athletes and leading scientists, this documentary makes a compelling case for the power of plants in fueling athletic performance and promoting overall health and well-being.

“The Test: A New Era for Australia’s Team” (2020)

“The Test” provides an inside look at the Australian cricket team as they navigate the aftermath of a ball-tampering scandal and strive to rebuild their reputation and reclaim their competitive edge. Through exclusive access and candid interviews, this documentary offers a compelling portrait of resilience, redemption, and the pursuit of excellence.

“All or Nothing: Tottenham Hotspur” (2020)

“All or Nothing” takes viewers behind the scenes of Tottenham Hotspur Football Club as they navigate a pivotal season filled with highs and lows on and off the pitch. With unprecedented access to players, coaches, and staff, this series offers an immersive and unfiltered look at the inner workings of a professional football club.

“The Weight of Gold” (2020)

“The Weight of Gold” shines a spotlight on the mental health challenges faced by Olympic athletes, exploring the pressures, expectations, and sacrifices that come with competing at the highest level. Through personal interviews and candid revelations, this documentary seeks to destigmatize mental illness and promote greater awareness and support within the sporting community.

“One in a Billion” (2016)

“One in a Billion” follows the remarkable journey of Satnam Singh Bhamara, the first Indian-born basketball player drafted into the NBA. From his humble beginnings in rural India to his unlikely ascent to the world’s premier basketball league, this documentary celebrates Singh’s indomitable spirit and the power of dreams.

“First Team: Juventus” (2018-present)

“First Team” offers an exclusive behind-the-scenes look at one of the most storied football clubs in the world, Juventus FC. Through intimate interviews and unprecedented access, this documentary series provides an insider’s perspective into the inner workings of the club, from training sessions to match days, offering fans a deeper understanding of the passion and dedication that drives both players and staff.

“The Great Alone” (2015)

“The Great Alone” follows the incredible journey of dog musher Lance Mackey as he competes in the grueling Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race across the unforgiving Alaskan wilderness. Through breathtaking scenery and personal interviews, this documentary captures Mackey’s indomitable spirit and the profound bond between man and dog in one of the world’s most challenging endurance races.

“The Short Game” (2013)

“The Short Game” follows the journeys of young golfers from around the world as they compete in the prestigious U.S. Kids Golf World Championship. Through the eyes of these talented young athletes and their families, this heartwarming documentary explores the joys, struggles, and sacrifices involved in pursuing excellence in the sport of golf from a young age.

“Last Chance U” (2016-present)

“Last Chance U” offers an unfiltered look at the world of college football’s most talented but troubled players as they strive for redemption at East Mississippi Community College. Through intimate interviews and raw footage, this documentary series explores the challenges faced by student-athletes both on and off the field, shedding light on the complex intersection of sports, education, and opportunity.

“Losers” (2019)

“Losers” delves into the stories of athletes who experienced heartbreaking defeats but found redemption in the aftermath. From boxing to figure skating, this documentary series explores the highs and lows of sports competition, celebrating the resilience, determination, and human spirit of those who refused to be defined by failure.

“The Ivory Game” (2016)

“The Ivory Game” shines a light on the illegal ivory trade and its devastating impact on the majestic elephants of Africa. Through undercover investigations and personal interviews, this documentary exposes the criminal networks behind the poaching epidemic, highlighting the urgent need for conservation efforts to protect endangered species and their habitats.

“Maiden” (2018)

“Maiden” follows the groundbreaking journey of Tracy Edwards and her all-female sailing crew as they compete in the Whitbread Round the World Race. Through archival footage and candid interviews, this documentary celebrates the courage, determination, and pioneering spirit of the women who defied the odds to make history in the male-dominated world of ocean racing.

“Q Ball” (2019)

“Q Ball” explores the rehabilitation and redemption of incarcerated men through the game of basketball at San Quentin State Prison. Through personal interviews and on-court action, this documentary offers a powerful testament to the transformative power of sports in fostering personal growth, building community, and promoting rehabilitation within the criminal justice system.

“David Beckham: Into the Unknown” (2014)

“Into the Unknown” follows football icon David Beckham as he embarks on a once-in-a-lifetime motorcycle journey into the heart of the Amazon rainforest. Through breathtaking landscapes and encounters with indigenous tribes, this documentary captures Beckham’s adventurous spirit and his quest for self-discovery beyond the world of sports.

“Florida Swamp Kings” (2020)

“Florida Swamp Kings” takes viewers into the heart of the Florida Everglades as adrenaline-seeking hunters face off against formidable alligators in a high-stakes game of survival. Through thrilling encounters and heart-pounding action, this documentary offers a glimpse into the dangerous yet exhilarating world of alligator hunting in the American South.

“The Manziel Comeback” (2020)

“The Manziel Comeback” chronicles the highs and lows of football quarterback Johnny Manziel as he attempts to resurrect his career after facing personal and professional setbacks. Through intimate interviews and behind-the-scenes footage, this documentary offers a candid look at Manziel’s journey of redemption and his ongoing quest for redemption on and off the field.

“Pelé” (2021)

“Pelé” provides an intimate portrait of Brazilian football legend Pelé, from his humble beginnings to his rise as one of the greatest players in the history of the sport. Through archival footage and personal interviews, this documentary offers a comprehensive look at Pelé’s extraordinary career, his impact on the game of football, and his enduring legacy as a global icon.

“The Speed Cubers” (2020)

“The Speed Cubers” follows the competitive world of Rubik’s Cube solving, focusing on the friendship and rivalry between two top competitors, Max Park and Feliks Zemdegs. Through personal interviews and thrilling competitions, this heartwarming documentary explores themes of friendship, perseverance, and the universal human desire to push the limits of what’s possible.

With an extensive selection of sports documentaries available on Netflix, there’s something for every fan to enjoy, whether you’re a die-hard enthusiast or simply looking for captivating storytelling. So grab your remote, settle in, and prepare to be inspired by the incredible stories of athletes, teams, and the triumph of the human spirit captured in these captivating documentaries.

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