Thiago Alves hadn’t fought since a 2012 submission loss to Martin Kampmann prior to Saturday night and UFC on FOX 11.
Did the time away from the Octagon hurt Alves? Not at all, as he scored a decision victory over Seth Baczynski in Orlando.
Alves (20-9) dominated with leg kicks and strikes, landing 123 total shots to just 85 by his opponent. Baczynski also left the cage with redness on his legs and stomach from all the punishment.
“It was very hard (being away),” Alves said. “When you have something you love taken away, it’s very challenging. I tried to focus on good, on this comeback right now.”
Alves also stated that “everything happens for a reason.” He’s undergone several surgeries since the Kampmann loss, forcing him to miss an entire year of competition.
Baczynski (19-11) suffered his third UFC loss, dropping his Octagon record to 5-3 overall. He opened his UFC run with four straight wins over 2011 and ’12.