cheap shot

Idioms & Phrases

cheap shot

An unfair or unsporting verbal attack, as in You called him an amateur? That's really taking a cheap shot. The term originated in sports, especially American football, where it signifies deliberate roughness against an unprepared opponent. [Slang; second half of 1900s]

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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