It's down to the final three houseguests on "Big Brother 18," which means there's one last Head of Household competition left to play out -- part 1 is already complete -- and then the person who wins just has to decide who he or she is taking to the finale.

Even without knowing the final HOH, each of the remaining houseguests has a decent shot to win, based on what we've heard the jury discussing. So let's take a look at each hamster's case for the $500,000 -- warning, light spoilers ahead.

3. James

james fist BB 18 winner: The case for & against the final three

The case against: What's his argument to win? He spent most of the summer snuggling with Natalie and kind of refusing to play the game, throwing competitions and generally keeping his hands clean. He only won one comp, the week 5 HOH, and hasn't really been the orchestrator of any big moves.

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The case for: He's a genuinely nice guy, and we all know that "Big Brother" juries have sometimes been so bitter that the nice player wins over the better player. We're not saying this is a good thing, but it's a point in James' favor. He also seems to have made a pre-game final two alliance with Nicole, which they have almost pulled off. If they are sitting in final two, we guess they are to be commended for that? Or something? We're really reaching here. James does not deserve to win this game.

2. Nicole

nicole screams BB 18 winner: The case for & against the final three

The case against: Must like James, Nicole spent a large portion of the summer treating "Big Brother" like it was her own personal dating show. She was content to let Corey's alliance keep her safe and just kind of bop along all the way to the end. Bor-ing.

The case for: She has won more competitions than James, which is to say she's won three versus his one -- though Nicole's first HOH win doesn't really count, as it was a team win and then she was selected to be HOH, and James threw her second HOH win to her. But she still held on in the wall competition a long time and also won two big POVs.

Her "big move" was getting Michelle out in week 10 and if she gets Paul out in final three, that'll be her other big move. If it's James-Nicole in the finale, we expect Nicole to win pretty easily, and if that's who she's sitting next to, she deserves it.

1. Paul

paul glasses BB 18 winner: The case for & against the final three

The case against: He definitely came into the house not knowing anything about "Big Brother." Remember how confused he was about pretty much anything? He was also kind of obnoxious at first.

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The case for: After a couple weeks, though, Paul really started to be an entertaining houseguest who was playing the game hard. He has won two HOHs and three POVs and was at least partially responsible for evicting Da'Vonne, Zakiyah, Paulie and Corey.

If Paul gets to the end, he deserves to win over both Nicole and James. He's definitely got a shot, because he won the first round of the HOH competition. However, his plan right now seems to be to take Nicole to the finals, which would be a mistake on his part because she might beat him, which would be the wrong choice on the jury's part.

As much as we'd love to see a woman break the streak of male winners -- especially if it means winning against a man, which has never been done on "Big Brother" -- Nicole just doesn't deserve it if she's sitting next to Paul.

Posted by:Andrea Reiher

TV critic by way of law school, Andrea Reiher enjoys everything from highbrow drama to clever comedy to the best reality TV has to offer. Her TV heroes include CJ Cregg, Spencer Hastings, Diane Lockhart, Juliet O'Hara and Buffy Summers. TV words to live by: "I'm a slayer, ask me how."