grandstand

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grandstand play

1. In sports, any excessively showy action or maneuver during play done primarily to impress or entertain the spectators. Originally specific to baseball, it has since been extended to any sport. Rather than shoot the ball and secure an easy two points for the team, she instead attempted to slam dunk the ball as a grandstand play for the crowd.
2. By extension, any excessively dramatic, showy, or ostentatious action, behavior, or maneuver. Our manager is more concerned with making a grandstand play for the CEO than effectively running the office. The dictator's constant threats of war are more of a grandstand play than a legitimate concern to the rest of the world.
See also: grandstand, play

make a grandstand play

1. In sports, to perform any excessively showy action or maneuver during play so as to impress or entertain the spectators. Originally specific to baseball, it has since been extended to any sport. Rather than shoot the ball and secure an easy two points for the team, she decided instead to make a grandstand play by trying for a slam dunk.
2. By extension, to act or behave in an excessively dramatic, showy, or ostentatious manner; to show off. Our manager is more concerned with making a grandstand play for the CEO than effectively running the office.
See also: grandstand, make, play

grandstand play, make a

Show off, act ostentatiously, as in His colleagues were annoyed with Tom for constantly making a grandstand play at sales conferences . This expression was first used for a baseball play made to impress the crowd in the grandstand (the section of high-priced seats at ballparks). [Second half of 1800s] For a synonym, see play to the gallery.
See also: grandstand, make

grandstand

in. to make oneself conspicuous. Don’t you just hate the way that Pat grandstands all the time?

grandstand play

n. something done exceedingly well to impress an audience or a group of spectators. The grandstand play caught the attention of the crowd just as they were leaving.
See also: grandstand, play
References in periodicals archive ?
He's a grandstander who tolerates and embraces violence, and encourages distrust and animus toward the Arab and Muslim community.
Joel's not a great grandstander,'' Cerrell said, calling it a backhanded compliment.
Thompson's political foes consider him a partisan grandstander who votes with the conservative wing of his party most of the time, who spent years in Washington as a well-connected lawyer and lobbyist for the Teamsters Union pension fund and companies like Westinghouse and Toyota and who may use the investigation as a springboard for a presidential bid.
I read the ``Open for Debate'' article (March 31) in reference to the Oscar protest engineered by arguably the most famous grandstander in history who apparently will do anything and everything in his power to get publicity for himself.
We cannot build the future on the backs of a few talented speakers, knee-jerk grandstanders, egomaniacal wanna-be "players" or wanna-be Democratic speechwriters.
He also contrasts this approach with the spiritual grandstanders who would use their demonstrable "gifts" for authoritarian control of others.
Grandstanders who try to exploit this tragedy for their own anti-police agenda should be marginalized and rightly denounced as rabble.
It only takes a few selfish and solitary grandstanders to undermine a culture of trust.
If the grandstanders on the Senate subcommittee were doing their jobs, they would be working to eliminate egregious special interest tax loopholes, rather than attempting to generate PR points.
Not while we have self-important grandstanders like these taking part.
Obama wanted steady, calm, focused leadership; he wanted to keep out the grandstanders and make sure the quiet dissenters spoke up.
Physicians who are different drummers can come across as strangely aloof or annoyingly animated, as clumsy communicators or eloquent grandstanders.
Whilst left-leaning lawyers savour newspaper opinion space to rail against burkas and detention centre despair, it appears that denouncing human rights violations in our suburbs hasn't captured the imaginations of professional grandstanders.
Bush can leave that to the talk show hosts, chattering classes, late-night comedians, and assorted political grandstanders.
Rather than playing defense under hot TV lights in front of the experienced grandstanders on the Senate Judiciary Committee armed with questions from staffers, why not give a series of speeches in controlled, familiar situations with more favorable audiences?