Tim Thomas once famously called Kenyon Martin “a fugazi” for what T.T. thought to be a phony tough dude routine. Presumably, Sacramento co-owner Joe Maloof will vouch for Martin’s muscle after the Denver F roughed up the Kings’ Spencer Hawes on Monday night. From the Bee’s Ailene Voisin :

Martin, who is known for his bruising, combative style, shoved Hawes near the right armpit as the 7-foot-1 center was in the air, preparing to throw down a right-handed dunk. He converted two free throws and then was escorted to the visitors locker room.

On the advice of Dr. Steve Traina, the Nuggets team physician who examined him, he flew back to Sacramento early Tuesday for the imaging test at UC Davis Medical Center.

The Kings started exhaling audibly in midafternoon when they were informed of the encouraging results. Knees remain a tender topic at Arco Arena. Images of Chris Webber’s crippling injury during the 2003 playoffs accompanied his retired No. 4 jersey to the rafters.

“That was thuggery,” said Maloof, the Kings’ co-owner, “and you can quote me on that. Kenyon Martin wasn’t trying to block the shot. He went right at Spencer when he was running full speed and at the (height) of his jump, when he was most vulnerable.

“Completely unnecessary. The Nuggets might not want to hear this, but there was no excuse for that, and he (Martin) needs to apologize to Spencer and our organization. That just wasn’t right.”

Asked about the transgression, Martin shook his head, countering that his actions warranted a foul, not a flagrant 1. But Hawes left no doubt about his own interpretation.

“I’d say so (flagrant 1),” he said forcefully. “I saw the replay. It didn’t look like he was anywhere near the ball.”