Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) welterweight Thiago Alves, 33, has been competing in mixed martial arts (MMA) for the past 16 years, 14 of which have been under American Top Team (ATT) in Coconut Creek, Florida.
So it should come as no surprise to learn that “Pitbull” recently transitioned to the role of coach at the famed fight camp, though it’s more of an investment into his post-fighting career than a full-time change.
Especially when his new role can make him a more dangerous combatant.
“Since I’m teaching fighters now, you see the sport in a different way,” Alves told MMA Fighting. “I study the techniques more, the things I have to teach them. It’s great for my career, my fight IQ is going way up. I see things that I didn’t pay attention before. It brings me a new energy and more responsibility because now I’m an example. The things I do in there will show my athletes that it works, that that’s the way you should fight."
That remains to be seen.
While Alves (22-11) was one win away from the welterweight title, he ultimately came up short against Georges St-Pierre at UFC 100 and has since struggled to return to form. Injuries and inactivity have prevented the Brazilian from achieving consistency, which left him unranked at 170 pounds.
Perhaps that will change if he’s able to defeat Mike Perry at the upcoming UFC Fight Night 116 event on FOX Sports 1 in Pittsburgh. Coach “Pitbull” was last seen turning away Patrick Cote at UFC 210 in April.