Carlos Condit scores TKO win over Thiago Alves in bloody war
Thiago Alves showed no quit and refused to give in or slow down, even as Carlos Condit battered and bloodied him Saturday night en route to a TKO victory at UFC Fight Night in Brazil.
The ringside physician made a cautious and likely wise decision to stop the fight in between the second and third rounds because of damage sustained to the Brazilian’s nose.
A tactically aggressive first round from both men saw Alves stalking Condit, with "The Natural Born Killer" angling out after throwing good combinations against Alves. Condit showed a diverse striking attack, using consecutive high-low kicks and a jab into an elbow, notably.
For his part, Alves clipped Condit with a nice right hand and saw his counter-striking paying off well at the end of the round.
At just over a minute into the second round, however, Condit landed a left elbow that dropped Alves, hard. With the Brazilian crowd silenced, Condit followed Alves to the mat with big strikes that threatened to end the fight.
Condit took the full mount, then back, and then a modified leg-drag position, up against the cage while he landed big left hands to the face of Alves. From on top in the half guard, Condit landed hard right elbows and punches, pulling what amounted to a mask of blood out of Alves’ face.
Alves refused to give up or give in, got to his feet and swung hard at Condit, landing a jab. A big right hand followed from Condit, along with well-timed elbow strikes, and then a takedown.
Condit took the I-position on the mat, looked for an arm bar, before taking the back once more with less than two minutes left in the round. Condit trapped or "killed" his opponent’s right hand with his own, and attempted to lock up a rear naked choke with his left.
Alves turned into the choke to defend it, but ended up eating punches from his back again. The brave American Top Team fighter rose to his feet once more, with just over 30 seconds left in the round.
With his nose appearing to be pushed in and up, and so much blood having poured out from his wounds that it covered not just Alves’ own face, but Condit’s as well, the former title challenger still stalked the American and threw big punches. That is how the fight would end — with Condit clearly having done more damage, but Alves refusing to quit.
In between the second and what would have been the third round, the doctor examined Alves and decided that he should not fight on. The fight was called and Condit’s return to competition after more than a year resulted in him making history.
The TKO win moved Condit to second place overall in UFC/WEC welterweight history for all-time stoppage wins, with 10. First place belongs to former world champion Matt Hughes, who had 11 stoppage wins in his hall of fame UFC career.
During his post-fight interview, Alves was resolute that he could have continued competing, but gracious toward his opponent. "I felt that I could keep fighting," he said.
"At least for another round but congratulations to Carlos Condit."
Condit made clear that he also respected Alves as "a guy I looked up to in the sport, for years." It was, Condit continued, "an honor to fight him."
It was an honor to simply watch the skilled battle between these two experts. Alves proved that he’s got resolve and heart behind his power.
Condit showed that, even after a knee reconstruction and over a year out, he is a force to be reckoned with at the top of the welterweight division. As for whom the former interim titleholder wants next, his only request was more action.
"Whoever," he insisted. "I want a good fight. I want someone exciting."