From an interview with MMAMania.coM:
Derek Bolender (MMAmania.com): Is the UFC still a potential option? When your contract is up will that be something you would at least consider?
Gilbert Melendez: Definitely, I would consider that. The UFC is the Super Bowl of MMA now. Sometimes you're not recognized as an MMA fighter unless you fight in the UFC to the common fan. Coming from Japan to the U.S. I came to get as an MMA fighter. Fighting in PRIDE didn't give me enough recognition. Now I'm fighting Showtime, which has given me some recognition, but still. It seems like if you really want to get the props you have to go to the UFC. Hopefully that will eventually change in Strikeforce and they will grow. I still consider the UFC to be awesome. I love the fighters there. I love watching it. I watched B.J. Penn vs. Diego Sanchez. I ordered the fight. I paid for the fight. I'm a fan of the whole sport. I watched The Ultimate Fighter. I'm a fan. It is something I would definitely consider.
Derek Bolender (MMAmania.com): What did you think of B.J. Penn's performance against Diego Sanchez this past weekend at UFC 107? Is he just on another level right now?
Gilbert Melendez: I think so. I think he is on another level. I think he's well-rounded. He's more than well-rounded though, he's greatly rounded. He can do it all on his feet. He can do it all with his wrestling and jiu-jitsu. B.J. is kryptonite for everybody. Honestly, I think Josh and I are some of the tougher fighters along with some of the guys in DREAM. I think we could give B.J. a better run for his money than those guys are doing in the UFC.