Las Vegas, Nev. – The Ultimate Fighting Championship® announced tonight that No. 2 ranked lightweight contender Gilbert Melendezhas agreed to a new contract with the organization. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. Melendez will now coach against UFC lightweight champion Anthony Pettis on season 20 of The Ultimate Fighter®. The two will then meet for the UFC lightweight title later this year.
The show, which will begin filming in May and premiere on FOX Sports 1 on Sept. 10, features the launch of the UFC women’s 115-pound weight class. The winner of this season of The Ultimate Fighter® will be crowned the UFC strawweight division’s inaugural champion.
The Ultimate Fighter® is the longest-running sports reality show on television, with The Ultimate Fighter Nations: Canada vs. Australia currently airing Wednesdays on FOX Sports 1. The next international edition of The Ultimate Fighter® will feature fighters from Latin America, with the premiere set for summer 2014. Melendez is slated to make a special guest appearance on the show and broadcast plans will be announced in the weeks to come.