Gilbert Melendez Signs New Deal With UFC, Coaching Opposite Anthony Pettis For TUF 20
By FCF Staff
One of the UFC’s top fighters won’t be heading to Bellator after all, as the promotion has announced that it’s re-signed Gilbert Melendez to a new deal, which will see the lightweight coach opposite Anthony Pettis on the 20th Season of “The Ultimate Fighter”. Melendez, who is currently ranked #2 in the UFC lightweight division, will fight the champion Pettis sometime later this year.
Recently, Bellator announced that it had reached an agreement with Melendez, but the UFC retained matching rights with the free agent fighter. The news came not long after UFC President Dana White had relayed negotiations with Melendez weren’t going well, and that the former Strikeforce champ should look elsewhere.
Terms of the UFC’s new deal with Melendez haven’t been disclosed.
The 31 year-old fighter is coming off a thrilling, unanimous decision win over Diego Sanchez in October, after Melendez (22-3) lost via split decision to Benson Henderson last April.
TUF 20 will begin filming in May and will feature women strawweight competitors. The winner of the competition will become the UFC’s 115 pound champion. The show will air in September.