Thiago Alves targets fight against Mike Perry in August

Thiago Alves defeated Patrick Cote by unanimous decision at UFC 210. Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Getty Images

UFC welterweight Thiago Alves would like his next fight to take place in August, and his ideal opponent would be hard-hitting Mike Perry.

Alves (22-11) is coming off a unanimous decision against Patrick Cote at UFC 210 last month. The former welterweight title challenger says he's never hand-picked fights, but at age 33, he does want them to be meaningful.

And with the 25-year-old Perry (10-1) making waves -- three knockout finishes in his first four UFC fights -- Alves sees a meaningful, fan-friendly matchup.

"I'm in a position where every fight really counts," Alves told ESPN.com. "It's always been do-or-die for me, but now more than ever.

"I think Mike Perry would be a good fight. He's hot right now. He's had a few big, impressive wins. I'm always down to throw with anybody, but that fight would make sense and fans would love it. Mike has said he'd fight me as well, and that it would be a good fight between us. I agree with him."

Perry, who trains out of south Florida, recorded a vicious second-round knockout over Jake Ellenberger on April 22.

Alves said he'd also be interested in a fight against Neil Magny, but "everyone wants to fight Neil Magny right now" and it wouldn't be as fun a matchup.

Despite several injury-related absences in recent years, Alves says he's generally not in a rush to get back into the Octagon. He mentioned Aug. 5 as a potential date for his next fight, but is waiting to see what the UFC offers.

Alves also trains out of south Florida, at American Top Team in Coconut Creek, and regularly tests himself against some of the best welterweights in the world. He's confident where he stands.

That said, he wants to take his time and be completely prepared for every bout. He's 2-2 since the start of 2015, including one failed attempt to drop to lightweight. Throughout his career, Alves has never had much trouble breaking into the welterweight rankings, and he'd like a fight that puts him in position to do that again.

"When I fought Carlos Condit [in May 2015], that was a title eliminator," Alves said. "Had I won that fight, I would have gotten a title shot. And then I decided to try and drop to lightweight, which was a little bit of a drag on my career at welterweight, but at the same time, it's re-energized my body. I lost about 10 pounds of body weight for that, so it's made making welterweight easy and healthy.

"I've really only gotten myself out of the rankings twice. Once because of inactivity and the other was when I tried to drop to lightweight. I think my win over Cote was important because it showed people, 'Hey, I didn't go anywhere. You're going to have to deal with me in this division.'"