Report: New UFC Deal Could Make Gilbert Melendez One of MMA’s Best Paid Fighters, Bellator’s Bjorn Rebney “Happy For Gil”
By FCF Staff
In addition to receiving a fight with lightweight champ Anthony Pettis, and a coaching role on the 20th Season of TUF, Gilbert Melendez may have become one of MMA’s best paid fighters as a result of his new UFC deal.
Sunday night the UFC announced that it has resigned Melendez, who not long ago, reached an agreement in principle with Bellator. The UFC retained matching rights for the free agent fighter, however, and ultimately tabled the winning contract.
According to a report from MMA Fighting.com, multiple sources have told the outlet that the lightweight’s new deal ensures that at least 75% of his Melendez’s upcoming fights will take place on pay-per-view cards. In addition, Melendez will reportedly earn PPV dividends at a lower buy rate than any other UFC fighter to date. The former Strikeforce champ will also reportedly earn PPV revenue regardless of whether he fights in the headliner or co-main-event.
The UFC has not disclosed any specific details regarding Melendez’s contract.
Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebney told the outlet that he’s “happy for Gil”, while discussing the fighter’s new deal, and “That’s what the free market system is all about.”
Rebney also argued that “This process has shown that in MMA, there are two legitimate options for fighters. And, as I said last week, with two large scale options for fighters in MMA, fighters negotiating power is dramatically improved.”
Melendez will begin his coaching duties for TUF 20, when the season begins filming in May, and the show will begin airing on FOX Sports 1 in September. No date has been set yet for the Pettis-Melendez fight.