Timeout vs. time out

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In American and Canadian English, timeout is one word in sports-related contexts, where it means an official pause in the action. Timeouts is its plural. In all other uses, time out is a two-word noun phrase.

In British English, meanwhile, the one-word timeout is considered incorrect. Time out is preferred, even in sports.


Timeout (North America)

The Mavericks called a timeout and when Terry got to the bench, Barea was yelling at him. [Dallas Morning News]

Chris Wilcox appeared to receive most of his wrath during the timeout.  [Globe and Mail]

Instead of calling an expected timeout to set up a play, Montclair Kimberley coach Paul Edwards allowed his kids to see it through without intervention. [The Star-Ledger]

Time out (North America)

He’d taken time out of a recruiting trip to Houston to stop by her office. [Houston Chronicle]

Think of the difficulty involved in catching a giant tarpon on light tackle your first time out. [Miami Herald]

This time out, he splits the difference and, consequently, gives the middle of the road an interesting sheen. [Globe and Mail]