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Gilbert Melendez matched with Josh Thomson for May title-defense

Former Strikeforce lightweight champ Josh Thomson may have thought his previous performance was akin to excrement but it was apparently good enough in the eyes of some to earn “The Punk” a crack at current title-holder Gilbert Melendez’s belt. Thomson outpointed opponent K.J. Noons in a convincing though not particularly exciting effort a month ago at Strikeforce: Tate vs. Rousey.

Strikeforce officials have confirmed the match-up’s addition to a May 19 card in San Jose also featuring Josh Barnett-Daniel Cormier facing off in the Grand Prix final. The bout marks the third fight in a series between Thomson-Melendez with things currently tied at one apiece.

The 19-4 Thomson is 3-0 in his last three appearances under the Strikeforce banner including victories over Pat Healy and Gesias Cavalcante. However, prior to the win over Noons the 33-year old lost a Unanimous Decision to Tatsuya Kawajiri in Japan and sat out for more than a year afterward due to injury.

Melendez hasn’t tasted defeat since falling to his friendly rival on the scorecards four years ago, racking up six consecutive wins with one involving success against Thomson in late 2009. “El Nino” holds other past triumphs over Kawajiri, Clay Guida, Shinya Aoki, and Jorge Masvidal.

PHOTO CREDIT – STRIKEFORCE