Calvin Johnson/Matchup Nightmare and Other Sports Phrases for Everyday Use

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Calvin Johnson/Matchup Nightmare and Other Sports Phrases for Everyday Use
J. Meric/Getty Images
Greatest Walk-off of all time?

Evan Longoria’s walk-off home run capped an electrifying finale to Major League Baseball’s 2011 regular season.

It wasn’t just any old home run; it was a “walk-off” home run. A walk-off baseball hit is a game-deciding (and in Longoria’s case, season-deciding) hit by the home team to win the game in the last inning of play. Walk-off is a wonderfully descriptive term, one that surely deserves more run outside the world of sports. 

So, with the MLB postseason underway, and NFL and college football in full swing and basketball around the corner (well, at least, college basketball), here’s a brief summary of how we can all improve our everyday lives by making better use of some currently popular sports terms like “walk-off.”


Sports usage: “Evan Longoria’s walk-off home run plunged the Boston Red Sox into yet another winter of despair.”

Suggested everyday usage: “Your presentation was fantastic, and really impressed the customer. That was a walk-off presentation!”


Ronald Martinez/Getty Images
Calvin Johnson, matchup nightmare.

Sports usage: “The Red Sox clubhouse was plagued in 2011 by a misguided sense of entitlement and dysfunctional team chemistry.” 

Suggested everyday usage: “The elementary school PTA refreshments committee has great chemistry this year.”

3. IMPLICATIONS (often preceded by SERIOUS) 

Sports usage: “Saturday’s game has serious BCS implications.” 

Suggested everyday usage: “The new coffee machine has some serious caffeine implications!”


Sports usage: “The Buffalo Bills’ spread offense is predicated on Ryan Fitzpatrick’s ability to read the defenders’ coverage.”

Suggested everyday usage: “Birthday candy will be predicated on whoever breaks open the pinata.”

5. TEMPO (sometimes, UP-TEMPO) 

Sports usage: “We need to control the tempo of the game, so that we don’t get into too much of an up-tempo situation.”

Suggested everyday usage: “When I walk the dog, we go around the block, up-tempo.” 


Sports usage:  “Devin Hester shocked the Panthers by returning the ensuing punt for a 69-yard touchdown.”

Suggested everyday usage: “We didn’t have jumper cables in our trunk, so we bought some on our ensuing trip to the hardware store.”


Sports usage:  “The Oregon Ducks feature a prolific, high-octane offense that is averaging over 40 points per game.” 

Suggested everyday usage:  “We have a prolific, high-octane book club that reads at least two books every month.”


Sports usage: “Calvin Johnson and (Insert name of your favorite NFL tight end) are matchup nightmares for any DB, linebacker or safety.”

Suggested everyday usage:  “That guacamole-and-bean dip is a matchup nightmare for the potato chips.”

Harry How/Getty Images
Ron Artest, "length" on defense.


Sports usage: “He is a ferocious rebounder, with great length on defense.” 

Suggested everyday usage:  “My pet tarantula Waldo has terrific length.” 

And last, but not least…. 


This phrase needs no introduction, because, at the end of the day, we’re all already using and overusing the phrase, “at the end of the day.”  At the end of the day, “at the end of the day” is threatening to become the most well-worn cliche in sports, business and everywhere else. 

Which brings us to the end of this article, and my hope that, at the end of the day, making use of popular sports phrases will have serious walk-off implications for improving the chemistry of your high-octane lifestyles and the tempo of the ensuing events in your everyday lives.

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