The smallest player on the court was having his way, doing whatever he wanted, whenever his team needed it.

Until Serge Ibaka put a stop to it.

Jameer Nelson, the generously-listed 6-foot Orlando Magic point guard, was leading a furious second-half rally when Ibaka stepped up and provided the perfect spark a listless Thunder team needed to hang on for a 117-104 victory on Friday night inside Chesapeake Energy Arena.

As Nelson knifed his way into the teeth of the Thunder's defense, looking to cut a one-time 27-point deficit to three, Ibaka stepped up and swatted Nelson's layup attempt. The rejection ignited the crowd and pumped life into the Thunder as Thabo Sefolosha recovered the ricochet.