Definition of knockout in US English:



  • 1An act of knocking someone out, especially in boxing.

    as modifier ‘a knockout blow’
    • ‘Had Ali fought anyone except Joe Frazier that night, he would have been a knockout winner.’
    • ‘Lewis, who has not fought since his eighth-round knockout of Mike Tyson last June, insists he will be ready.’
    • ‘Although Sanchez was not known to be a knockout puncher, he could hit.’
    • ‘Horrible and devastating as the Pearl Harbor raid was, it was by no means a knockout blow to the Pacific Fleet.’
    • ‘Much has been written about the failure of the Allied armies to deal the Germans a knockout blow in 1944.’
    • ‘Bernard is a very good puncher, although he is not considered a one-punch knockout artist.’
    • ‘While Jellicoe was criticised at the time and failed to achieve the knockout blow that was within his grasp, he nonetheless succeeded in neutralising the German naval threat for the remainder of the war.’
    • ‘At half time the crowd was buzzing but soon after the break the champ landed the knockout blow.’
    • ‘Calderon focused more on movement and avoiding a knockout punch, and did not mount the same body attack he had previously.’
    • ‘McGrath scented a quick end to the contest - and like a prize boxer went straight for the knockout blow.’
    • ‘He conceded to the Evening Press that in a way he was glad not to have witnessed the cruel knockout blow, which has left the popular boxer battling for his life.’
    • ‘It didn't look a knockout blow but the American-Italian slumped to the canvas; referee Coyle revealed later that he had considered stopping the contest there and then.’
    • ‘On the other hand, a fighter who is not known as a knockout puncher can be very strong physically.’
    • ‘A shut-down of the West Coast ports could deliver a knockout blow to the ailing US economy.’
    • ‘Your career seems to be so much more reinvigorated since the knockout win over Klitschko.’
    • ‘A boxing match is like a chess game, with fighters trying to outwit and outmaneuver their opponent to deliver the knockout blow.’
    • ‘The crowning achievement of his career was probably his knockout of bantamweight champion, Lupe Pintor.’
    • ‘Following the Lyle fight Foreman scored four consecutive knockouts over the division's top contenders including former champ Joe Frazier.’
    • ‘We were like two boxers punching each other hard without being able to land a knockout blow’
    • ‘Many heavyweight fighters have scored impressive knockouts in their careers, but nothing to this magnitude.’
    stunning blow, finishing blow
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    1. 1.1informal An extremely attractive or impressive person or thing.
      ‘he must have been a knockout when he was young’
      • ‘You should be honored and proud to be with her because she's a knockout, man.’
      • ‘Sudden-death Champions League football is a real knockout for the fans, and long may it continue.’
      • ‘When he was voted Sexiest Man Alive earlier this year, People magazine gushed: ‘Suave and sophisticated, caring and kind, he's also a total knockout - and a one-woman man.’
      • ‘The service remains professional, quick and highly knowledgeable, but the menu seems less sexy and, while the dishes are interesting, there are few real knockouts.’
      • ‘It's definitely not an attractive look for a supposedly irresistible knockout, even though she has the necessary figure.’
      beauty, vision, picture, sensation, joy to behold, dream
      masterpiece, sensation, marvel, wonder, triumph, winner, success, feat, coup, master stroke
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    2. 1.2British A tournament in which the loser in each round is eliminated.
      • ‘United and Bayern lead their group with eight points apiece and a victor this evening will book a place in the last-eight knockout.’
      • ‘Yet just look at the successive performances of the Greek team in the knockout stages of the tournament.’
      • ‘This summer, Europe's top clubs have strengthened their sides in a way that should pay dividends when the crucial knockout matches come round in late-February and March.’
      • ‘Not until this tournament gets to the knockout quarter-final stages will the real competition get under way.’
      • ‘The eight fastest times make the quarter-finals and then the race competition becomes a straight knockout to decide the medals.’
      • ‘In poker anyone can beat anyone on the day, but the already large element of luck involved is magnified in knockout tournaments where one piece of bad fortune can send the world's best player home with nothing.’
      • ‘The play-offs and quarter-finals onwards are straight knockouts, each round being decided by a free draw.’
      • ‘Barcelona, on the other hand, will be a match for anyone in the knockout rounds.’
      • ‘The last event was the traditional tug-of-war, in which a round robin knockout decided the winner.’
      • ‘Yesterday, with a hard-won victory over Mexico, he took them as group winners to the knockout stage of the World Cup for the first time in 40 years.’
      • ‘They qualify from their group but fall to Argentina in the first round of knockout matches after a penalty shoot-out.’
      • ‘Both were already in the play-offs and the only thing at stake was home advantage in the first knockout round.’
      • ‘At the Games there will be eight teams in each competition battling it out in pools, followed by the knockout rounds.’
      • ‘From the semi-final, the competition is a straight knockout, with the winners progressing to the final and the losers competing for the bronze.’
      • ‘She was top qualifier in the strokeplay section of the competition which whittled the field down to eight for two knockout rounds.’
      • ‘The men will be split into four pools of four with the top two from each group going through to the quarter-finals, from where it will be a straight knockout tournament.’
      • ‘Victory in a one-sided match will have sharpened up the Dutch for the knockout contests ahead.’
      • ‘If you are in form domestically, you'll stand a better chance of making it through; this is all the more apparent now that the second group stage has been disbanded and we have an extra knockout round.’
      • ‘Football fans are now expecting the team to go further and Sono has said that in the knockout rounds anything is possible.’
      • ‘The top four teams in each group advance to the quarter-finals where the tournament turns into a straight knockout.’
      elimination match, tie, elimination competition
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