Gilbert Melendez interested in featherweight run if Nate Diaz wins UFC belt

A number of weeks ago widely respected trainer Cesar Gracie came forward to make it clear teammates Nate Diaz and Gilbert Melendez would never face off against each other regardless of the stakes involved. Both men, lightweights, have worked alongside one another for the bulk of their professional careers and are part of one of the tightest knit group of competitors in the sport at Gracie’s gym in California.

It appears Gracie was not kidding either, as it appears Melendez will explore his options at 145 pounds if Diaz lays claim to the UFC championship this weekend when he battles Benson Henderson at UFC on FOX 5.

Diaz revealed the information during open workouts for the event, adding he felt Melendez would go on to be lightweight champ if he’s unable to seal the deal himself on Saturday night. MMAJunkie has also reported Melendez is in talks with the UFC to shift over to the organization from Strikeforce similarly to Ronda Rousey.

It is believed Diaz would move back up to welterweight if Melendez comes in and competes as a 155-pounder.

Melendez is currently on the sidelines with an injured shoulder that forced him out of a January defense of his Strikeforce title. He holds an overall record of 21-2 including wins over Tatsuya Kawajiri, Josh Thomson, Clay Guida, and Shinya Aoki.

PHOTO CREDIT – STRIKEFORCE/UFC

3 COMMENTS
  • AlphaOmega says:

    None of that matters if the UFC decides to not pick up Gil once SF closes, and personally I hope they don’t since I think he ducked out of the last fight, just so that he didn’t risk the bargaining chip he thinks he has in negotiations. I could be wrong on that, but it’s highly suspicious/coincidental of the timing.

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  • moosebaby02 says:

    Knowing Uncle Dana and Co. they will not pass up on Gilbert. As much as they will hate to say it but UFC/Zuffa needs Cesar Gracie and his camp

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  • AlphaOmega says:

    I don’t know, I don’t think Gil has made himself look good recently, he kept backing out of fights because nobody in SF boosted his stock and was almost demanding to go to the UFC, and then when told by Showtime/SF that he couldn’t jump ship he took the Thomson fight (and lost stupid judges) and then bitched about the fight and how it was pointless.

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