Thiago Alves (fighter)

Thiago Alves d'Araujo (Portuguese pronunciation: [tʃiˈaɡu ˈawvis]; born 3 October 1983) is a Brazilian bare-knuckle fighter and former mixed martial artist. A 27-fight veteran of the Ultimate Fighting Championship, he competed in the promotion from 2005 until 2019. Aside from being a professional fighter, Alves has been a striking coach at the American Top Team since 2017.[3]

Thiago Alves
Thiago Alves.JPG
BornThiago Alves d'Araujo
(1983-10-03) 3 October 1983 (age 38)
Fortaleza, Brazil
Other namesPitbull
NationalityBrazilian
Height5 ft 10 in (178 cm)
Weight174 lb (79 kg; 12 st 6 lb)
DivisionWelterweight
Lightweight
Reach68 in (173 cm)[1]
Fighting out ofCoconut Creek, Florida, United States
TeamAmerican Top Team
RankBrown belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu[2]
Years active2001–present
Mixed martial arts record
Total38
Wins23
By knockout13
By submission1
By decision9
Losses15
By knockout3
By submission5
By decision7
Amateur record
Total2
Wins2
By knockout1
Other information
WebsiteOfficial UFC Profile http://www.thiagoalves.tv/
Mixed martial arts record from Sherdog

BackgroundEdit

Born and raised in Fortaleza, Brazil, Alves began training in Muay Thai at the age of 15 in order to get in better shape before transitioning to mixed martial arts at the age of 17. Alves won his first MMA bout as an amateur at just 15 years old, defeating a 25-year-old competitor by unanimous decision. At 19, Alves relocated from Brazil to Coconut Creek, Florida to train full-time at the prestigious American Top Team camp.

Mixed martial arts careerEdit

Ultimate Fighting ChampionshipEdit

Alves, with a record of 8–3, received an invitation to make his UFC debut at Ultimate Fight Night 2 against fellow UFC newcomer Spencer Fisher. The fight would take place on Alves' twenty-second birthday. Despite having early success in the bout, especially on the ground, Alves fell victim to a triangle choke late in the second round.[4]

Thiago returned to action on the undercard of UFC 56, defeating previously-undefeated Ansar Chalangov by TKO due to punches at 2:25 into the first round.

At UFC 59, Thiago was matched up against Derrick Noble, a fighter he had previously lost to by (rear-naked choke). The two fighters were both aggressive on the feet, in which Alves was forced to cover up after getting rocked with a flurry by Noble. Looking to capitalize, Noble rushed in when Alves caught him with a perfectly timed counterpunch that dropped him and led to Alves scoring a TKO victory.

At Ultimate Fight Night 5, Alves was matched up against fellow up-and-comer Jon Fitch. In a match-up of two future top welterweight contenders, Fitch defeated Alves via TKO at 4:37 into the second round after landing a flush upkick to the face of Alves which dropped him and led to Fitch finishing the fight with strikes.

Alves returned to his winning ways at Ortiz vs. Shamrock 3 - The Final Chapter, defeating veteran John Alessio by unanimous decision.

"Pitbull" completed a busy 2006, during which he fought four times. At UFC 66, he dominated Tony DeSouza, knocking out the jiu-jitsu black belt with a knee in the second round. Following his victory, it was announced that Alves tested positive for a diuretic, spironolactone, which he supposedly used to help him lose water weight in order to make the 170-pound limit.[5] As a result of the failed drug test, Alves was suspended eight months by the Nevada State Athletic Commission and fined $5,500.[6]

Alves returned at UFC Fight Night 11, where he knocked out Japanese fighter Kuniyoshi Hironaka with a punch and knee in the second round. Less than two months later, Alves faced off against veteran contender Chris Lytle at UFC 78. After an exciting stand-up battle, doctors halted the bout at the end of the second round because of a cut above the eye of Lytle, declaring Alves the winner by doctor stoppage. The bout earned both fighters Fight of the Night bonus award.[7]

In his first bout of 2008 at UFC Fight Night 13, Alves faced his biggest test to date, as he was matched up against welterweight contender Karo Parisyan. After resisting any attempts to grapple but failing to amount any significant offense during the stand-up exchanges throughout the first round, "The Pitbull" scored a knee to the head of Parisyan, knocking down the judo expert before finishing him on the ground with strikes.

Rising up the welterweight ranksEdit

Once again taking just two months between bouts, Alves accepted a fight against former UFC Welterweight Champion Matt Hughes, a fighter widely considered the most dominant champion in UFC history. The Welterweight bout, which served as the main event of UFC 85 in London, was scheduled as a late replacement after Chuck Liddell had to pull out of his headliner fight against Rashad Evans with a hamstring injury.

Prior to the bout, Alves surprised many by missing weight for the welterweight bout—coming in at 174 pounds.[8] Despite his opponent missing the 170-pound limit, Hughes accepted the fight at a catchweight. Despite the pre-fight blunder, Alves shocked the crowd by dominating the heavily favored former champion. After picking apart Hughes standing and displaying vastly-improved takedown defense throughout the first round, "The Pitbull" knocked Hughes down with a flying knee and followed him to the ground with punches early in the second, earning a TKO stoppage. This win earned Alves his first Knockout of the Night bonus award.[9] In the post fight interview, Alves attributed not making weight to spraining his ankle two weeks before the fight.

Next, Alves was slated to face Diego Sanchez at UFC 90, in what many believed would be a match for the number-one contender spot. Sanchez, however, would be forced to pull out of the bout just weeks before the event due to injury.[10]

Josh Koscheck, another top-contender and four-time NCAA wrestling All-American, stepped in for Sanchez on short notice.[11] Alves controlled most of the fight and won via unanimous decision (30–27, 29–28, and 30–27).[12] The Brazilian's improved takedown-defense was once again on display, as the American Top Team fighter forced Koscheck into a kick boxing battle. Alves' devastating leg kicks proved to be a factor throughout the bout, taking away much of Koscheck's mobility. He also managed to drop Koscheck several times during the 3-round bout, but Koscheck's quick recovery enabled him to survive the onslaughts.[13]

Welterweight title shotEdit

With his impressive victory over Koscheck, Alves was on a 7-fight win streak, winning 9 of his past 10 bouts. After consecutive dominant performances against Parisyan, Hughes and Koscheck, Dana White announced that Alves had earned a title shot against the winner of the welterweight title-fight at UFC 94. After Georges St-Pierre defended his title at UFC 94, Alves entered the ring to congratulate him. St. Pierre said that he was looking forward to facing Alves in the cage.[14] Thiago Alves fought Georges St-Pierre for the welterweight title at the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas on 11 July 2009 at UFC 100.[15] During the fight, Alves was taken down a total of ten times. Although he showed potential on his feet and put in a resilient performance on the ground, continually getting back up, he was ultimately subjected to a clinic put on by St. Pierre and being outwrestled in all five rounds ultimately losing via unanimous decision (50–45, 50–44, and 50–45).

Post-title shotEdit

Alves was scheduled to face Jon Fitch at UFC 107[16] in a rematch of their bout at UFC Ultimate Fight Night 5. However Alves suffered a knee injury, forcing him to withdrawfrom the fight. Alves was then scheduled to face Fitch on 27 March 2010 at UFC 111.[17] However, on 25 March, Alves was taken off the card due to the discovery of an arteriovenous malformation in the brain from a pre fight CAT scan.[18][19][20] Alves had the corrective surgery on 31 March 2010 at Roosevelt Hospital in New York. He took leave of absence, staying in New Jersey with his wife, Melissa Farrand Alves, and was expected to fight again during the summer of 2010.[21]

The Alves/Fitch rematch, originally slated for UFC 107, then UFC 111,[22] then UFC 115,[23] finally took place at UFC 117.[24] This fight was confirmed to be the number one contendership for the welterweight championship (to fight the winner of the St-Pierre/Koscheck bout). Alves again failed to make weight, weighing in at 171.5 lb, meaning he had to give up 20% of his fight purse. Alves would go on to lose to Fitch via unanimous decision.[25] Dana White stated in the post fight press conference that Alves could be moving to the middleweight division.[26]

Days later, Alves said that he'd been given one more chance by the UFC to compete as a welterweight.[27]

Alves faced John Howard on 11 December 2010 at UFC 124.[28] Alves won by a dominant unanimous decision in one of his best performances in the UFC, out-striking and out-wrestling Howard and eventually getting a knockdown in the third round with a clean punch.

Following the victory over Howard, Alves lost to Rick Story on 28 May 2011 at UFC 130 via unanimous decision. Alves had a slow start to both the first and second round, during which Story pressured Alves against the cage but was unable to land any significant damage or takedowns. Alves managed to find his rhythm and began landing clean strikes that resulted in him winning the third round, however ended up losing 29–28 on all three judges' scorecards.[29]

Alves faced promotional newcomer Papy Abedi at UFC 138. After exchanging hard leg and body kicks, and showing good takedown defence, Alves was able to land a two-punch combination that dropped Abedi, securing full mount and opening up a cut due to elbows. Displaying improved ground control, Alves defeated Abedi via submission (rear-naked choke) at 3:32 of round one to secure his first submission victory in the UFC (and first submission victory in his MMA career that wasn't due to strikes).[30]

Alves faced Martin Kampmann on 3 March 2012 at UFC on FX 2.[31] After avoiding takedowns and outstriking Kampmann for the majority of the fight, Alves was submitted in the final minute of the bout after being caught in a guillotine while trying to secure a takedown.[32]

Alves was expected to face Japanese superstar Yoshihiro Akiyama on 21 July 2012 at UFC 149.[33] However, Akiyama was forced out of the bout with an injury and replaced by Siyar Bahadurzada.[34] Then on 1 June, Alves pulled out of the bout citing an injury [35] and was replaced by Chris Clements.[36]

Alves was expected to face Matt Brown on 17 August 2013 at UFC Fight Night 26.[37] However, Alves pulled out of the bout citing another injury and was replaced by Mike Pyle.[38]

After over two years away from the sport due to a litany of injuries and lengthy rehabilitations, Alves returned to face Seth Baczynski on 19 April 2014 at UFC on Fox 11.[39][40] He won the fight via unanimous decision. The win also earned Alves his second Fight of the Night bonus award.[41]

Alves was expected to face Jordan Mein on 23 August 2014 at UFC Fight Night 49.[42] However, Alves pulled out of the bout citing yet another injury, and was replaced by Brandon Thatch.[43] Subsequently, Thatch also pulled out of the bout with Mein citing a toe injury.[44] The bout between Alves and Mein would later be rescheduled and eventually took place on 31 January 2015 at UFC 183.[45] Alves won the fight via TKO in the second round, after hurting Mein with a brutal kick in the solar plexus and capitalizing with subsequent punches. This win also won Alves his first Performance of the Night bonus award.[46]

Fighting twice in a year for the first time since 2011, Alves returned to face Carlos Condit on 30 May 2015 in the main event at UFC Fight Night 67.[47] Alves lost the fight via TKO after the cage-side doctor ended the contest between the second and third round due to the amount of damage Alves had taken.[48][49]

Alves was expected to face Benson Henderson on 28 November 2015 at UFC Fight Night 79.[50] However, on 14 November, Alves pulled out the bout citing injury and was replaced by Jorge Masvidal.[51]

Alves was expected to face Al Iaquinta in a lightweight bout on 12 November 2016 at UFC 205.[52] However, Iaquinta announced on 19 September that he would not be taking the fight due to a contract dispute with the promotion.[53] Alves was rescheduled to face Jim Miller at the event.[54] At the weigh-ins, Alves missed weight by nearly seven pounds, weighing in at 162.6 lbs. Miller, who was already on weight, had to rehydrate to keep their weight difference within 7 pounds. Because of that, he came in at 157.6 lbs and the bout proceeded at catchweight. New York State Athletic Commission and UFC officials indicated that Alves must not weigh more than 173 lbs the day of the fight or the fight would be cancelled. As a result, Alves was fined 20% of his fight purse, which went to Miller.[55] He lost the fight by unanimous decision.[56]

After the failed attempt at lightweight, Alves returned to welterweight and faced Patrick Côté on 8 April 2017 at UFC 210.[57] He won the fight by unanimous decision.[58]

Alves was expected to face Mike Perry on 16 September 2017 at UFC Fight Night 116.[59] However, Alves pulled out of the fight on 13 September for undisclosed reasons.[60]

Alves was scheduled to face Zak Cummings on 14 January 2018 at UFC Fight Night: Stephens vs. Choi.[61] On 13 January 2018, it was announced that Cummings injured his head after a bathroom slip and the bout against Alves was cancelled.[62]

Alves faced promotional newcomer Curtis Millender on 18 February 2018 at UFC Fight Night 126.[63] He lost the fight via technical knockout in the second round.[64]

Alves faced promotional newcomer Alexey Kunchenko on 15 September 2018 at UFC Fight Night 136.[65] He lost the fight by unanimous decision.[66]

Alves faced Max Griffin at UFC Fight Night: Assunção vs. Moraes 2 on 2 February 2019.[67] He won the back-and-forth fight via split decision.[68]

Alves faced Laureano Staropoli at UFC 237 on 11 May 2019.[69] He lost the fight via unanimous decision.[70]

Alves was expected to face Gunnar Nelson on 28 September 2019 at UFC Fight Night 160.[71] However, Alves pulled out of the fight in mid-September due to undisclosed injury.[72]

Alves faced Tim Means on 7 December 2019 at UFC on ESPN 7.[73][74] He lost the fight via a submission in round one.[75]

On 11 January 2020 it was reported that Alves was released by the UFC.[76]

Bare-knuckle fightingEdit

On 22 January 2020, news surfaced that Alves had signed a three-fight contract with Bare Knuckle Fighting Championship.[77][78] He was expected to make his promotional debut against Phil Baroni, however Baroni was removed from the card as the organization could not reach him in timely fashion.[79] Instead, he made his promotional debut against former contender from The Ultimate Fighter, Julian Lane, at BKFC 12 in Daytona Beach, FL on 11 September 2020[80] Alves won the fight by split decision.[81]

BKFC Middleweight ChampionEdit

Alves then faced Ulysses Diaz for the inaugural middleweight championship at BKFC 18.[82] He claimed the championship via technical knockout after the ringside doctor stopped the bout after the third round.[83]

Personal lifeEdit

Aside from his mixed martial arts athlete and coach careers, Alves is currently in the process of becoming a police officer in Florida.[84]

Championships and achievementsEdit

Mixed martial artsEdit

Bare-knuckle boxingEdit

Mixed martial arts recordEdit

Professional record breakdown
38 matches 23 wins 15 losses
By knockout 13 3
By submission 1 5
By decision 9 7
Res. Record Opponent Method Event Date Round Time Location Notes
Loss 23–15 Tim Means Submission (guillotine choke) UFC on ESPN: Overeem vs. Rozenstruik 7 December 2019 1 2:38 Washington, D.C., United States
Loss 23–14 Laureano Staropoli Decision (unanimous) UFC 237 11 May 2019 3 5:00 Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Win 23–13 Max Griffin Decision (split) UFC Fight Night: Assunção vs. Moraes 2 2 February 2019 3 5:00 Fortaleza, Brazil
Loss 22–13 Alexey Kunchenko Decision (unanimous) UFC Fight Night: Hunt vs. Oleinik 15 September 2018 3 5:00 Moscow, Russia
Loss 22–12 Curtis Millender KO (knee) UFC Fight Night: Cowboy vs. Medeiros 18 February 2018 2 4:17 Austin, Texas, United States
Win 22–11 Patrick Côté Decision (unanimous) UFC 210 8 April 2017 3 5:00 Buffalo, New York, United States Return to Welterweight.
Loss 21–11 Jim Miller Decision (unanimous) UFC 205 12 November 2016 3 5:00 New York City, New York, United States Lightweight debut; Alves missed weight (162.6 lbs).
Loss 21–10 Carlos Condit TKO (doctor stoppage) UFC Fight Night: Condit vs. Alves 30 May 2015 2 5:00 Goiânia, Brazil
Win 21–9 Jordan Mein TKO (body kick) UFC 183 31 January 2015 2 0:39 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States Performance of the Night.
Win 20–9 Seth Baczynski Decision (unanimous) UFC on Fox: Werdum vs. Browne 19 April 2014 3 5:00 Orlando, Florida, United States Fight of the Night.
Loss 19–9 Martin Kampmann Submission (guillotine choke) UFC on FX: Alves vs. Kampmann 3 March 2012 3 4:12 Sydney, Australia
Win 19–8 Papy Abedi Submission (rear-naked choke) UFC 138 5 November 2011 1 3:32 Birmingham, England
Loss 18–8 Rick Story Decision (unanimous) UFC 130 28 May 2011 3 5:00 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States
Win 18–7 John Howard Decision (unanimous) UFC 124 11 December 2010 3 5:00 Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Loss 17–7 Jon Fitch Decision (unanimous) UFC 117 7 August 2010 3 5:00 Oakland, California, United States Catchweight (171.5 lbs) bout. Alves missed weight.
Loss 17–6 Georges St-Pierre Decision (unanimous) UFC 100 11 July 2009 5 5:00 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States For the UFC Welterweight Championship.
Win 17–5 Josh Koscheck Decision (unanimous) UFC 90 25 October 2008 3 5:00 Rosemont, Illinois, United States UFC Welterweight Championship eliminator.
Win 16–5 Matt Hughes TKO (flying knee and punches) UFC 85 7 June 2008 2 1:02 London, England Catchweight (174 lbs) bout. Alves missed weight. Knockout of the Night.
Win 15–5 Karo Parisyan TKO (knee and punches) UFC Fight Night: Florian vs. Lauzon 2 April 2008 2 0:34 Broomfield, Colorado, United States
Win 14–5 Chris Lytle TKO (doctor stoppage) UFC 78 17 November 2007 2 5:00 Newark, New Jersey, United States Fight of the Night.
Win 13–5 Kuniyoshi Hironaka TKO (punch and knee) UFC Fight Night: Thomas vs Florian 19 September 2007 2 4:04 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States
Win 12–5 Tony DeSouza KO (knee) UFC 66 30 December 2006 2 1:10 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States Alves tested positive for banned diuretics.
Win 11–5 John Alessio Decision (unanimous) Ortiz vs. Shamrock 3: The Final Chapter 10 October 2006 3 5:00 Hollywood, Florida, United States
Loss 10–5 Jon Fitch TKO (upkick and punches) UFC Fight Night 5 28 June 2006 2 4:37 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States
Win 10–4 Derrick Noble TKO (punches) UFC 59 15 April 2006 1 2:54 Anaheim, California, United States
Win 9–4 Ansar Chalangov TKO (punches) UFC 56 19 November 2005 1 2:25 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States
Loss 8–4 Spencer Fisher Submission (triangle choke) UFC Fight Night 2 3 October 2005 2 4:43 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States
Win 8–3 Jeff Cox KO (knee and punches) KOTC 48: Payback 25 February 2005 1 0:15 Cleveland, Ohio, United States
Win 7–3 Jason Chambers TKO (submission to punches) IHC 8: Ethereal 20 November 2004 1 4:57 Hammond, Indiana, United States
Win 6–3 Nuri Shakir Decision (unanimous) Absolute Fighting Championships 7 27 February 2004 2 5:00 Fort Lauderdale, Florida, United States
Loss 5–3 Derrick Noble Submission (rear-naked choke) Absolute Fighting Championships 6 6 December 2003 2 2:13 Fort Lauderdale, Florida, United States
Win 5–2 Marcus Davis Decision (split) Hardcore Fighting Championships 2 18 October 2003 3 5:00 Revere, Massachusetts, United States
Win 4–2 Mike Littlefield TKO (punches) Mass Destruction 12 16 August 2003 2 0:50 Taunton, Massachusetts, United States
Win 3–2 Carlos Alexandre Pereira TKO (doctor stoppage) Bitetti Combat Nordeste 2 20 March 2003 2 N/A Natal, Brazil
Win 2–2 Fabio Holanda Decision (unanimous) Bitetti Combat Nordeste 1 28 November 2002 3 5:00 Natal, Brazil
Win 1–2 Wilson Belchoir KO (punch) Champions Night 3 8 October 2001 1 N/A Brazil
Loss 0–2 Lucas Lopes Decision (unanimous) X: Fight 28 September 2001 3 5:00 João Pessoa, Brazil
Loss 0–1 Gleison Tibau Submission (armbar) Champions Night 2 30 June 2001 2 3:31 Fortaleza, Brazil

[86]

Bare knuckle recordEdit

Professional record breakdown
2 matches 2 wins 0 losses
By knockout 1 0
By decision 1 0
Res. Record Opponent Method Event Date Round Time Location Notes
Win 2–0 Ulysses Diaz TKO (doctor stoppage) BKFC 18: Beltran vs. Shewmaker 26 June 2021 3 2:00 Miami, Florida, United States Won the inaugural BKFC Middleweight Championship.
Win 1–0 Julian Lane Decision (split) BKFC 12: Alves vs. Lane 11 September 2020 5 2:00 Daytona Beach, Florida, United States

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

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  2. ^ "Thiago Alves - Official UFC Fighter Profile". UFC.com. Retrieved 31 May 2015.
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  5. ^ "NSAC Says Alves Tests Positive for Diuretic". Sherdog.com. 4 January 2007. Retrieved 29 January 2007.
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  9. ^ a b "Alves, Burns, Wiman and Tavares earn $50K UFC 85 bonuses". MMAjunkie.com. 7 June 2008.
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  11. ^ Pishna, Ken (13 October 2008). "Koscheck Steps in to Face Alves at UFC 90". MMAWeekly.com. Retrieved 15 February 2009.
  12. ^ "UFC 90 Results and Live Play-by-Play". MMAWeekly.com. 23 October 2008.
  13. ^ Rousseau, Robert (25 October 2008). "UFC 90 Review: Anderson Silva retains title". MMAFighting.com. Archived from the original on 29 October 2008. Retrieved 15 February 2009.
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  21. ^ Thiago Alves Has Brain Surgery, Can Train in 2 Weeks
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External linksEdit