We find that even very low Ni doping levels of high-quality Bi2Sr2Ca1Cu2O8 single crystals strongly affect the transition temperature T(c). We also observed that T(c) is not related to the total Ni concentration, but only to that of Ni engaged in NiO-type bonds. By controlling the temperature during crystal growth, one can modify the relative weight of Ni in NiO-type bonds with respect to other configurations-and therefore T(c).