Layne Murdoch Jr./NBA via Getty

Fantasy basketball picks for Friday, April 3, including Evan Turner, Anthony Davis and Brook Lopez.

By Paul Palladino
April 03, 2015

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 out-performs its projections by the largest amount 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.

Thursday’s overachievers

Guard: Iman Shumpert, Cavaliers, +11.1

The Cavaliers easily beat the Heat on Thursday, and Shumpert had a strong game off the bench. He made seven of his 12 shots en route to 17 points, four steals, three rebounds and one assist. The breakout game helped the Cavaliers win for the 12th time in their last 15 games. Shumpert has averaged just 6.7 points during the stretch, so his big night is a good sign as they get ready for the playoffs.

Forward: Brandan Wright, Suns, +19.4

Wright returned to the starting lineup and nearly helped the Suns upset the Warriors before losing, 107-106. He finished with 16 points, 12 rebounds, two blocks and two steals while making six of his 12 shots. If Wright remains in the starting lineup, he is a great fantasy option down the stretch.

Center: Andrew Bogut, Warriors, +5.3

Bogut didn’t put up huge numbers, but he did enough to beat his projection and help the Warriors win their 62nd game of the season. In 23 minutes, he finished with eight points, nine rebounds, three assists, two blocks and a steal. While his offensive game isn’t what it used to be, Bogut’s defense is essential to Golden State’s title hopes.

Today’s picks

Guard: Evan Turner, Celtics vs. Bucks, 7:30 p.m. ET

Turner has piled up big stats over the past few weeks as the Celtics try to win the last playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. In his last 12 games, he has averaged 13.9 points, 7.3 assists and 6.2 rebounds while shooting 50.4% from the field. Turner has recorded two triple-doubles during the stretch and should have a good game on Friday. The Celtics are tied with the Heat for the No. 8 seed and are a half-game behind the Nets for the No. 7 spot.

Forward: Anthony Davis, Pelicans at Kings, 10 p.m. ET

Davis has beaten his projection in four of his last five games while keeping up his season-long MVP-caliber play. A matchup against another former Kentucky center in DeMarcus Cousins should bring out the best in Davis on Friday. The Pelicans are 1.5 games behind the Thunder for the No. 8 seed in the Western Conference and need a win to keep their playoff hopes alive.

Center: Brook Lopez, Nets vs. Raptors, 7:30 p.m. ET

Lopez has played at an All-Star level as the Nets have won seven of their last eight games. He has averaged 26.9 points, 9.3 rebounds and 3.1 blocks while shooting 61.7% from the field. Lopez has the ability to opt of his contract this summer and might be in for a new long-term contract based on his recent play.

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