Tuesday December 2nd, 2014

Ready to show your friends you know more about the NBA than they do? FanNation's Basketball Throwdown fantasy basketball game is your best option. You pick a guard, forward and center who you think will exceed their fantasy projections. The scoring system takes into account points, rebounds, assists, blocks, steals and turnovers. The team that surpasses their projections by the most wins, so picking a lineup of Stephen Curry, LeBron James and Joakim Noah is no sure-fire path to victory. You can also bet anywhere from $1 to $500 on each night's matchup or play for free.

I'll give you my picks each day and a recap of yesterday's top performers so you can get bragging rights over your friends.

Sign up for tonight's Basketball Throwdown here.

Monday's overachievers

Guard: Alexey Shved, 76ers, +18.8

Shved played well for the second game in a row on Monday. After scoring 18 points against the Mavericks on Saturday, he dropped 19 points and added four rebounds, four assists and two steals in a loss to the Spurs on Monday. While the 76ers remain winless on the court, Shved is one of several players who are prone to breakout games in Basketball Throwdown because of low projections.

Forward: Kawhi Leonard, Spurs, +15.0

With Tim Duncan and Tony Parker out of the lineup, Leonard stepped up to lead the Spurs on Monday. The reigning Finals MVP recorded a double-double with 26 points and 10 rebounds while adding four assists and two steals in the victory. Leonard has played particularly well over his last five games, averaging 19.8 points, 8.4 rebounds and 1.8 steals.

Center: Enes Kanter, Jazz, +16.0

Kanter controlled the paint during Monday night's loss to the Nuggets. Kanter scored 17 points, matched his season-high with 15 rebounds and blocked two shots, but the Jazz only got 13 points from its bench in the loss. Although Kanter is only 22 years old, he is already in his fourth year and has blocked just six shots all season. He will need to be more consistent going forward to solidify his spot in Utah's core.

Today's picks

Guard: Russell Westbrook, Thunder at Pelicans, 8:00 p.m.

Westbrook came out firing in his return from a broken hand last week against the Knicks, piling up 32 points, eight assists and seven rebounds in just 24 minutes. With Kevin Durant expected to be out of the lineup tonight, Westbrook will have the green light once again, and the Pelicans should be able to keep the game closer than the Knicks. Considering how much of the burden he must carry for Oklahoma City's offense with Durant out of the lineup, he is a good bet to blow past his projections tonight.

Forward: Jeff Green, Celtics at Hawks, 7:30 p.m.

Green is a difficult player to project because of the peaks and valleys that mark his game. While his numbers are up across the board from last season, he has only scored more than 20 points in a game three times this year. The Hawks and Celtics are both in the bottom third of the league in scoring defense, so Green should put up big numbers tonight.

Center: Andre Drummond, Pistons vs. Lakers, 7:30 p.m.

Drummond has struggled in his first season under new head coach Stan Van Gundy, but a matchup with the Lakers is a date every big man circles on his calendar. While Drummond struggled on Sunday against the Warriors, he played well in Detroit's three previous games, averaging 22.0 points, 14.3 rebounds and 1.7 blocks. The Lakers don't have any big men who can match Drummond's combination of size and athleticism.

- Paul Palladino

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