The fights are rolling in for UFC on Fox 11 in Orlando, and one of them involves the return of a former welterweight title challenger. Brazilian striker Thiago Alves, whose last fight was in March 2012, is set for a preliminary card match-up with TUF 11 alum Seth Baczynski:
Back in April - http://t.co/crrhgSjrGD Pitbull vs. Polish Pistola— UFC News (@UFCNews) February 6, 2014
Alves (19-9) was on his way to at least a decision win against Martin Kampmann, but was choked out with just a minute remaining in the final round of their back-and-forth encounter. Once a force at 170 lbs, the 30-year-old has fought just 5 times since losing to Georges St-Pierre in 2009, with just a 2-3 record in the process. Baczynski (19-10) had won 6 fights in a row (including a few outside of the UFC before he was re-signed), but fell short against Mike Pierce and was viciously KO'd by Brian Melancon. He closed out 2013 strong with a win over Neil Magny.
Samman was the favorite to face Uriah Hall in the show's finale, but ended up losing to eventual season winner Kelvin Gastelum by 1st round rear-naked choke. While the result was disappointing, he still made his UFC debut on the season finale and impressively stopped Kevin Casey by 2nd round TKO. Samman has been out of the Octagon since that April 2013 bout, battling through an injury and later coping with personal tragedy during that time span. Magalhaes (7-1) actually made his UFC debut in Florida in 2012, losing a dull decision to Buddy Roberts. He's won his last two since then, including a mild upset win over Nick Ring at UFC Fight Night 33 in December and a finish of Karlos Vemola in Brazil.
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