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Former UFC welterweight contender and division standout Thiago Alves (16-6 MMA, 9-3 UFC) can go back to the gym in three weeks, doctors today told the fighter.

Ricardo Liborio, Alves' trainer at American Top Team, told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) that Alves successfully underwent surgery today in Florida to correct a malformation on the left side of his brain.

"Everything is good," Liborio said.

Alves was set to rematch Jon Fitch this past Saturday at UFC 11, but the New Jersey State Athletic Control Board discovered the brain irregularity in his pre-fight medical paperwork and suspended him two days prior to the fight as a precaution. Shortly afterward, Ben Saunders was allowed to pull out of a scheduled fight with Jake Ellenberger and stepped in to face Fitch.

Initial diagnoses cast doubt on Alves' future as a mixed martial artist, though a follow-up visit to a New York-based neurologist one day after the suspension revealed the problem was not career-ending.

Alves will remain hospitalized for at least one day to assure no complications arise, but doctors are positive about a full recovery, Liborio said.

"The first thing he said when he got out of anesthesia was, 'When can I get back to training?'" Liborio said. "In three weeks, he should be training if he doesn’t do anything stupid."

Alves, 26, has not fought since dropping a five-round decision to welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre at UFC 100 in July 2009. He's twice been scheduled to avenge a second-round TKO loss to Fit, which came in 2006. A knee injury forced him out of UFC 107, and the failed exam once again has "Pitbull" on the sidelines.

"It's the second time the fight was supposed to happen, and it didn't," Alves said this past Friday. "I just have this bloody taste in my mouth, and I have to get it out. I guess it just wasn't the right time."

Alves and his camp have already requested a fight at UFC 114 on May 29 in Las Vegas.
Source - http://mmajunkie.com/news/18534/ufc...hree-weeks-after-successful-brain-surgery.mma
 

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It's great that he can return so soon, looking forward to him bringing the action against some poor soul :thumb02:
 
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