Gilbert Melendez Wants UFC Title Shot, but it Won’t be His Next Fight


Strikeforce lightweight champion Gilbert Melendez

Strikeforce lightweight champion Gilbert Melendez

Strikeforce lightweight champion Gilbert Melendez, throughout his career, has striven to attain one specific goal… to be unequivocally regarded as the top lightweight fighter in the world.

Having decimated nearly everyone in his path for the past two years, and losing only two bouts, both by decision, in his nearly nine-year career, Melendez is poised on the precipice of attaining that goal.

There’s only one thing stopping him, and he knows what that one thing is.

“I’m trying to be the number one lightweight in the world. To MMAWeekly I am and maybe to El Guapo (Bas Rutten) on HDNet I am, but to many others I’m number two, number three, number four, or number five, even,” he told recently. “I really want to make that statement and the only way to do that is to go to the UFC and take the UFC title. Of course, I’d like that opportunity.”

It’s not that Melendez is ready to drop his belt and run. He knows that he’s got work to do under the Strikeforce banner, although the company now finds itself under the same ownership as the UFC. He would, however, relish the opportunity to fight the winner of the third go-around between UFC lightweight champion Frankie Edgar and top contender Gray Maynard.

Melendez has his own fight on tap, however, as soon as late September.

In this exclusive interview with‘s Damon Martin, Melendez discussed his thoughts on being considered the top lightweight in the world, but also talked about who he believes he will be fighting next, who he thinks will win between Edgar and Maynard, and how he would fare against the winner of that fight.


  1. He will lose in the UFC !

  2. He is gona be the champ!!!!

  3. Melendez is a great wrestler, but so are all the other UFC Lightweights. The Lightweights in Strikeforce are all quality fighters, but I think they are decidedly a step down from their UFC counterparts, especially when it comes to wrestling. While I think Melendez would beat guys like Clay Guida (again) and Anthony Pettis, I think he would fall to Jim Miller, Frankie Edgar, or Gray Maynard.

  4. There are probably 10 lightweights in the UFC that could beat Gilbert,i still remember when little Ishida controlled him their first fight.

    • have you ever seen gil fight? 10 in the ufc that will beat him? your retarded…..

  5. I think they should send a UFC guy over to Strikeforce to fight Gil before he gets his UFC title shot.

    Henderson, Guida or J Miller

  6. pound for pound Melendez is one of the best!