not hold a stick to (someone or something)

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not hold a stick to (someone or something)

To not be nearly as good, desirable, or impressive as someone or something else. The sequel isn't too bad, but it doesn't hold a stick to the original. John's a nice enough guy, he just can't hold a stick our last supervisor.
See also: hold, not, stick

not hold a stick to someone or something

 and not hold a candle to someone or something
Fig. not to be nearly as good as someone or something. Sally is much faster than Bob. Bob doesn't hold a stick to Sally. This TV doesn't hold a candle to that one. That one is much better.
See also: hold, not, stick