Ibaka spent the rest of the game contesting shots with his length, keeping offensive possessions alive and tossing in the occasional 17-footer. Without Green, the Thunder lost a streaky but solid 3-point shooting threat to space the floor. But the team gained a big man who played closer to the basket on both ends, helping to clog up the paint and shore up the Thunder's defense.
By the final buzzer, the two players Ibaka drew duty against had off nights. Garnett had just eight points on 3-for-10 shooting while pulling down eight rebounds. O'Neal scored only five points on 1-for-5 shooting to go with nine rebounds.
"He gives us more shot-blocking and more athleticism," said Kevin Durant. "It's tough not having Jeff out there, but I think Serge did a good job."