Strikeforce In Desperate Need of a Matchup For Gilbert Melendez
By FCF Staff
Strikeforce Lightweight Champion Gilbert Melendez is a talented fighter isolated to a dying promotion, Strikeforce, and only has one challenger left.
After his recent split decision victory against Josh Thomson, in a trilogy fight that didn’t garner any interest among casual MMA fans, Melendez is looking for high-profile, tough fights. While still in the shadows of the UFC’s major PR machine, Melendez now likely awaits tough Team Quest product Pat Healy.
Healy is continually underrated considering the talent he possesses, but Melendez would likely be a bad matchup for him. If he gets by Healy, the chance of Strikeforce being able to find a legitimate lightweight for him drastically decreases – even if Strikeforce representatives say they are working on something.
Let’s face it: Strikeforce’s top talent has been plucked by the UFC, and Melendez is stuck in a long-term deal with Showtime. The UFC will need to try and convince someone in its deep lightweight division to take a gamble and head to Showtime to fight Melendez.
Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker wants former Bellator lightweight champion Eddie Alvarez – after his recent blasting of Japanese MMA superstar Shinya Aoki – to enter the Strikeforce lightweight division and face Melendez. That seems rather unlikely at the moment, however, as Alvarez would be better suited to collect big paychecks and fight better competition in the UFC’s competitive lightweight division.