UFC 138 Results: Can Thiago Alves Make Another Title Run?

Kyle Symes@ksymes88Correspondent IIINovember 5, 2011

Thiago Alves looked very impressive in dismantling the highly touted Papy Abedi. Alves showed the killer instinct that had been lacking in his previous fights.

Alves has long been considered a top 10 welterweight, but coming off an impressive win, fans are going to start to ponder another title run from "The Pitbull."

Alves just defeated a prospect with eight total fights. Should we really be astonished at Alves winning in convincing fashion? That's what's supposed to happen.

If Alves would've lost, we would be saying how he's done as a welterweight contender but a win really gives him nothing as far as rankings go.

Alves still hasn't beaten a top welterweight since Josh Koscheck back in 2008.

When he's faced one of the better caliber fighters, Alves has found himself on the mat and on the losing side. Against Jon Fitch, he was clearly affected by the weight cut and found himself repeatedly put on the canvas.

Against Georges St-Pierre, he showed some promise with his stand-up, but had no answer for GSP's takedowns.

Thiago needs to improve his wrestling ability if he wants to make another run at the title.

He's going to need to defeat the winner of Koscheck/Carlos Condit or Nick Diaz should he lose. All of those men have competent ground games that would test Alves' talents.

Besides working on his takedown defense, Alves needs to focus on his weight-cutting issues. Previously, he made weight in his fights against John Howard and Rick Story, but failed to make weight for his UFC 138 bout.

If Alves can get his weight issues under control and come into fights in peak physical condition, his strength and speed could be enough to overcome his lack of takedown defense.

Unless Alves can correct his weight issues and his wrestling, don't expect "The Pitbull" to be fighting for UFC gold in 2012.

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