Green’s Dictionary of Slang

throw down v.

1. [late 19C] to overcome, to prove too much for [wrestling imagery].

2. [late 19C+] (US) to discard, to abandon.

3. [late 19C-1920s] (US) to get someone into trouble, to betray.

4. in senses of SE throw down the gauntlet.

(a) [1910s+] (US) to challenge, in an aggressive manner; also attrib.

(b) [1980s+] (US black) to get into a fight with.

(c) [1970s+] (US teen) to challenge a rival, e.g. MC or breakdancer .

5. [1930s+] (US campus) to eat or drink voraciously.

6. [1980s+] (US black/campus) to enjoy oneself vigorously, to dance.

7. (US black) to perform music (without agressive subtext of sense 4c).

8. attrib. use of sense 6.

9. [1980s+] (US black/campus) to perform well; to work hard on a major project.

10. [1980s+] (US campus) to have sexual intercourse.

In phrases

throw down on (v.) (also throw on)

[late 19C+] (US Und.) to hold a gun on.

throw down one’s cards (v.) (also throw up one’s cards)

[late 17C+] to give up a project, a way of life.