long game

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(This etymology is missing or incomplete. Please add to it, or discuss it at the Etymology scriptorium.)


long game (plural long games)

  1. A long-term strategy or endeavor.
  2. (whist) It turns out that the long game and the short game are variants of whist. Chamber’s Encyclopedia explains: “About 1785 the experiment of dividing the game into half was tried, and short whist was the result. The short game soon came into favour; and in 1864 the supremacy of short whist was acknowledged.”
  3. (American football) The aspect of the game in which the strategy is to advance downfield by throwing the ball to a receiving player; the passing game.
    • 2013 Sept. 8, "What we saw: Seahawks 12, at Panthers 7," Seattle Post-Intelligencer (retrieved 11 July 2014):
      [T]he Seahawks held Newton to 119 passing yards, as the Panthers kept mainly to the ground and Seattle's secondary shut down the long game.
  4. (golf) The portion of the game, played with driver clubs, in which the ball is advanced down the fairway to the putting green.
    • 2010 July 18, Christopher Clarey, "Another Second for Golf’s Latest Near-Miss Man," New York Times (retrieved 11 July 2014):
      “[E]verybody thinks when the wind blows it affects the long game the most, but it doesn’t,” Westwood said. “It tends to affect the putting most.”

Usage notes[edit]

  • One who follows a long-term strategy is said to "play the long game".

See also[edit]