when the chips are down

Contents

EnglishEdit

EtymologyEdit

From the game of poker.

PronunciationEdit

PhraseEdit

when the chips are down

  1. (idiomatic) When the pressure is on; when the situation is urgent or critical
    He wasn't a very talented musician but, when the chips were down, he played well.
    When the chips are down, you need to make tough decisions.

See alsoEdit