Thiago Alves '100% healthy', wants to make his return at UFC 171

Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

Ex-UFC welterweight title challenger Thiago Alves is looking to make his return to the Octagon next March.

Remember Thiago Alves? He was the violent KO artist who made his way towards a Welterweight title shot against Georges St-Pierre, where he lost a unanimous decision and nearly had to deal with GSP "hitting him with his groin" per Greg Jackson's advice. Leading up Alves fought 7 times from October 2006 to October 2008 before challenging St-Pierre. Since his 2009 loss to the champion, the 30-year-old has fought a grand total of 5 times in 4 years. Per UFC Tonight and Alves' manager Malki Kawa, the Brazilian is finally healthy and is targeting a UFC 171 return date:

Alves (19-9) last fought in March of 2012 against Martin Kampmann at UFC on FX 2. Thiago was on his way to a decision victory (or perhaps a late TKO) when he went for a takedown on a seemingly hurt Kampmann but got caught in a dramatic fight-ending guillotine choke instead. He's since pulled out of fights with Siyar Bahadurzada and Matt Brown, citing injuries on both occasions.

UFC 171 is on March 15th in Dallas, TX and will be headlined by Jon Jones and Glover Teixeira for the light heavyweight belt. If Alves is set to come back, I'd imagine he'd either get a highly winnable fight against someone on the verge of being cut, or be used as a testing ground for someone like Brandon Thatch or Stephen Thompson. Regardless, it'll be interesting to see how Alves performs when he does fight again.

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