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Thread: Gilbert Melendez finds 15-minute silver lining on path back to UFC title fight

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    Default Gilbert Melendez finds 15-minute silver lining on path back to UFC title fight

    Gilbert Melendez finds 15-minute silver lining on path back to UFC title fight

    http://www.mmajunkie.com/news/2013/0...fc-title-fight

    "I'm excited to fight three five-minute rounds," Melendez recently told MMAjunkie.com Radio (www.mmajunkie.com/radio). "Initially after I lost, the first thing on my mind more than anything was, 'Heck yeah – 15 minutes, that's way easier.' I've been training for 25-minute fights my last 10 fights, and it's kind of tough on the body."

    And because Melendez has indeed been in 10 straight title fights – going the full 25 minutes six times – he'll get a welcome training reprieve now, while trying to work his way back to where he wants to be, and that's back in another title fight.

    The road back there for Melendez (21-3 MMA, 0-1 UFC) starts against Diego Sanchez (24-5 MMA, 13-5 UFC) in October at UFC 166 in Houston, a fight booking first reported by MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com).

    That's a matchup Melendez thinks could get him in the title picture once again with a win.

    "I think he has that mystique – he's a big name and he's a tough guy," Melendez said. "I think it'll be a good win for me. Of course you want to win the belt, but I'd like to just beat every 155-pounder out there. It's fresh for me. I'd love to fight (Donald) 'Cowboy' (Cerrone). I'd love to fight Gray (Maynard) and beat them all. (But Sanchez is) the first 'Ultimate Fighter' winner, he's been around the sport a long time and he's one of the most popular fighters out there."

    Melendez won Strikeforce's 155-pound title in 2006 with a win over Clay Guida. After losing it to Josh Thomson two years later, he went on to win seven straight title fights before his loss to Henderson, a fight that had Strikeforce champ vs. UFC champ bragging rights implications.

    But Melendez isn't thinking revenge against Henderson – even though many scoring the fight had it for him, not the champ. If Henderson loses the belt to Anthony Pettis next month, Melendez will fight whoever has the title.

    "It doesn't really matter to me – I'm just kind of gunning for the title," he said. "I'm not like, 'Oh, I need to get Benson.' The goal now is to get the title, I think, and hopefully get that and beat everybody else. I think (two fights), or maybe in one (I can be back in a title fight). I think it could happen, but I've got to keep winning. But hopefully mine's (as little) as two fights away."

    In his past eight fights, Sanchez has five "Fight of the Night" bonuses – mostly because of a propensity to throw down with wild abandon. If the fight goes in that direction, Melendez believes he can stand right in and keep things going his way.

    "He's that guy who when he's pushed and challenged, he gets caught in it and it becomes a scrap," Melendez said. "I feel like I shine in that, as well. I think I'm intelligent in that area and I'll do good there with him."
    And if you want beef, then bring the ruckus

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    God that fight's gonna have a shitload of energy and wading forward.
    You say shark I say hey man, Jaws was never my scene and I don't like Star Wars

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    I still think Melendez did enough to win, or at least warrant a rematch...I hope he KTFO Sanchez and gets a rematch. Or a shot after TJ.

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    Nah, I am all about Sanchez winning this fight and getting one last run out of him. Then again I am biased as I am a Sanchez fan.


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    Sanchez leaves me with a lot of questions as it stands now I think Ill pick Gilbert as it is now.

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    I can't stand Diego but I do freely admit that he's a hard worker and his pressure is absolutely ferocious.

    That being said, Melendez can keep up about any pace at this point in his career and should be able to handle Diego but it certainly won't be a walk in the park.
    You say shark I say hey man, Jaws was never my scene and I don't like Star Wars

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    I've been singing Melendez's praises ever since he starched Aoki.

    Melendez is the best 155'er on the planet!

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    I would say that Melendez is maybe two wins away from another title shot, especially since his fight with Henderson was so close.

    If he wins, I think he'd get TJ Grant in a title eliminator. If that fight went down, the winner would certainly receive the next title shot.

    But if Diego wins, where does that put him? It would be a big win over a top five fighter if he pulled it off.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CA_Gas Bag View Post
    I would say that Melendez is maybe two wins away from another title shot, especially since his fight with Henderson was so close.

    If he wins, I think he'd get TJ Grant in a title eliminator. If that fight went down, the winner would certainly receive the next title shot.

    But if Diego wins, where does that put him? It would be a big win over a top five fighter if he pulled it off.
    If he pulls off the upset against Melendez, I'd say he's a win away from a title shot according to UFC logic.
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    Quote Originally Posted by KevoOnTheRadio View Post
    If he pulls off the upset against Melendez, I'd say he's a win away from a title shot according to UFC logic.
    I think that's if he loses, then talks a lot of shit about the champion.

    If Diego won, maybe he'd go against TJ. Granted it may not be deserved, but other than Josh Tompson I don't see who else would be matched against him if he did win. And that would be two consecutive wins against top ten (or top five depending on how the rankings shape up after the fight). I wouldn't really complain too much if Diego got a title shot after that, especially if he looked good in doing so.

    If he comes in like he did against Gomi though, I don't see it happening.

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