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Northwest Division Notes: Thunder, Nuggets, Timberwolves

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Veteran swingman Andrew Roberson is progressing nicely in his rehab from left knee surgery, as relayed by Erik Horne of The Oklahoman.

"He’s cutting, he’s moving," Thunder coach Billy Donovan said. "He’s been on a really good track.”

Roberson is widely considered one of the league's best wing defenders and has been an underrated factor for a Thunder squad with stars such as Russell Westbrook and Paul George.

Roberson underwent surgery on the knee in May. Per Horne, he has intensified his conditioning work lately and will be re-evaluated within the next few weeks.

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The Nuggets have made defense their staple, as evidenced in a 32-point beatdown of the Los Angeles Lakers earlier this week, writes Mike Singer of the Denver Post.

“It’s our identity,” Nuggets coach Michael Malone said. “Let’s be honest, our first three years to be in the bottom five of defense every year, for me, it’s embarrassing. When you’re known, ‘Hey, he’s a defensive coach,’ and three years running you’re bottom five. I have pride, we all have pride.”


Wednesday's 39-point thrashing of the Spurs was the third-largest victory margin in team history.

"It's big time when you get a team like that and play an organization like that, and we come out and play defense the way we did," Wolves center Karl-Anthony Towns said. "It's a wonderful sight and it shows the hard work we're putting in day-in and day-out."