While many fighters coming off of back-to-back wins over top-ranked opponents wouldn't be willing to wait for their chance at a title shot, Thiago Alves is more than happy to continue his climb up the ladder towards an opportunity to compete for welterweight championship.
In his last two fighters, Alves has knocked out two impossibly tough opponents in former champion Matt Hughes and top contender Karo Parisyan.
It looked like he was primed for a title shot, but instead of waiting around for that chance he took another fight against another top ranked opponent in Diego Sanchez.
Just over a week ago, Sanchez fell out of the scheduled bout with a rib injury. He was quickly replaced with another top fighter in Josh Koscheck, who stepped in at the last minute.
Many fighters would be hesitant to give up the chance to compete for a title in their next fight, but Alves is even willing to fight another top ranked welterweight on short notice.
"That's what I'm here for. I know I'm going to be the world champion, it's just a matter of time," said Alves recently on MMAWeekly Radio. "Fight one more, two, three, four times, it doesn't really matter to me. I'm just getting better and better every time. Koscheck's a tough guy. It's a fight that would have happened anyways, sooner or later, so why not now?"
In the matchup with Koscheck, the American Top Team fighter feels it's actually a fight that favors him more than his previous spot against Sanchez.
"Diego's got that southpaw, unorthodox style and he's really dangerous on the ground," Alves said. "I think this fits me better."
Obviously, Alves respects Koscheck and his considerable skills, but he does note the slight advantages that his previous opponent held over his new foe.
"Koscheck is a really dangerous fighter too. He's got great stand-up, he's very athletic, and great wrestling and great jiu-jitsu too," commented Alves. "Let's say once it hits the ground, with Diego, I mean I have to very careful with Koscheck too, but it's just because of his background. Diego is a jiu-jitsu guy so I have to watch out for a couple things he does on the ground."
Before the fight with Koscheck begins, Alves will first battle the bulge as he looks to make weight on Friday. In his last fight, he dealt with an ankle injury that prevented him from doing much cardio to drop the last few pounds and he came into his fight against Hughes well over the 170-pound limit.
Alves is more than confident that won't happen again.
"It's really important, I have to do it," he said about the weight cut. "Losing is not an option, not making weight is not an option. I'm going to make weight, my weight's good."
After the weight cut then Alves gets to put his weeks of training into the fight with Koscheck. While he can't give away too many secrets, he does know how the fight will end.
"I'm going to do everything I have to do to win this fight," he said. "I don't know how I'm going to do it, I don't know the way that it will be, but I'm going to knock him out."
And as far as his plans after the fight with Koscheck is over?
"After this fight, I'm looking for my title shot."