Gilbert Melendez threw down the gauntlet, Bellator Fighting Championships answered, and it now appears as though Strikeforce has accepted the challenge. Following a series of events that took place over the weekend it now looks like a clash of champions between Bellator lightweight champion Eddie Alvarez and Strikeforce title-holder Melendez could be on the horizon.
Bellator recently released this statement in a press release only hours before this weekend’s “Strikeforce St. Louis: Heavy Artillery” card was set to get underway:
Bellator founder and CEO Bjorn Rebney responded today to Strikeforce lightweight champion Gilbert Melendez’s call-out of reigning Bellator Lightweight Champion Eddie Alvarez, saying that he will do everything in his power to make the fight happen.
Melendez, appearing on this weekend’s edition of HDNet’s “Inside MMA,” told hosts Kenny Rice and Bas Rutten that he would “love to fight Eddie Alvarez.”
“I think he’s an amazing fighter and that’s why I call out Eddie Alvarez – let’s unify those titles,” Melendez said. “I’d love to fight that guy and test myself. I think if I could beat him, I could be No. 1 and vice-versa.”
Rebney said an Alvarez-Melendez fight would be “a great matchup between two of the best in the world.”
“As an MMA fan, first and foremost, Alvarez versus Melendez is an awesome fight at 155 that deserves to be seen and needs to be made,” Rebney said. “Gilbert has the heart of a warrior, just like our champion Eddie. I will do everything I can to get Gilbert what he asked for. Gilbert wants the fight, Eddie wants the fight and I want the fight. All we have to do is get Scott Coker on board and together we can make this happen. Eddie wants to fight the best and Gilbert wants to fight the best and there is no reason why any promoter or network should stand in the way of that.”
To which Strikeforce President Scott Coker recently responded with, “If the stars align and we can work out all the terms and conditions and timing, we’d do it.”
“Of course we would,” Coker revealed in a recent conversation with MMAJunkie.com. “Why wouldn’t we? Let’s go do this.”