Melendez motivated to be No. 1

by Carlos Arias | source:

Who is the best lightweight in the world of mixed martial arts?

Strikeforce 155-pound champion Gilbert Melendez is 19-2, he has avenged both of his losses and he is 7-1 in title bouts. He holds victories over Clay Guida, Mitsuhiro Ishida, Josh Thomson, Shinya Aoki and Tatsuya Kawajiri.

"The goal is to be number one in the world at the end of the day," Melendez said. "And the only way to do that is by getting the UFC title."

Melendez takes center stage in the Strikeforce cage when he defends his Strikeforce lightweight title against Jorge Masvidal on Saturday at 5 p.m. at Valley View Casino Center in San Diego. The card will be televised tape delayed at 10:30 p.m. on Showtime.

"A lot of people have been talking nonsense; that Jorge, he's - like he's no good," Melendez said. "You're going to run by him and that talk kind of bothers me because some people are ignorant. They don't really follow the game that much. If you don't fight in the UFC, they think you're no good.

"So what's been the challenge for me is motivating myself and staying motivated and pumping myself up. So this means a lot to myself; just not to fans, not to anybody. This fight is for me just to prove that I can defend my throne, and I'm the big favorite here and I have a tough guy who's underrated and I got to really come through."

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Recent Comments »

JeremyLambert88 site profile image  

12/17/11 12:12 AM by JeremyLambert88

At least he recognizes that he can't be #1 unless he's fighting in the UFC. It's just the MMA world we live in these days. Even if UFC does send some guys like Clay Guida or Gray Maynard over, those guys failed at capturing the title, so a win for Gil would just mean more, "I want Gil vs. the UFC champion" outrage (poor word choice, but you get what I'm saying).

queazy site profile image  

12/16/11 11:56 PM by queazy

Yeah cause he has a belt. But according to dana he's gonna send some ufc'ers to strike force to certain divisions. So gill if u happen to get past Mel. I'm sure ur gonna have ur hands full trying to get to the UFC fighting guys from the UFC.

queazy site profile image  

12/16/11 11:53 PM by queazy

Good point. But aoki was scared and has no stand up or take downs especially against a wrestler. When aoki comes to UFC soon it will be interesting. I really felt he could have finished aoki. Kinda upsetting he didn't.

heroder site profile image  

12/16/11 1:16 PM by heroder

Gil is highly underrated and at times overratedhes definitly top 5He showed he can carry game plans and change them around in fights. This is something alot of great fighters lack like BJ.He showed massive improvements in his striking. His speed and technique have doubled since coming off injuryHis wrestling has laways been good but that as well has improvedBy not getting submitted by AOki proves were his JJ is but anything can happen when youre dazed.I think he has the tools, the camp, the skills to be #1

mark9 site profile image  

12/16/11 12:48 PM by mark9

im putting my money on masvidal this weekend

Malvert the Janitor site profile image  

12/15/11 6:36 PM by Malvert the Janitor

But he won't get the chance to prove it, apparently...

ICEMAN1245 site profile image  

12/15/11 6:31 PM by ICEMAN1245

Melendez is top 3 LW in the world and would smash on guys in the ufc

queazy site profile image  

12/15/11 6:17 PM by queazy

he beat guida in o6 and since has fought a couple legitimate oppenents close to his clas and a few good guys. i would like to see a rematch.. your going off something 6years ago. guida just loss a decision to bendo and before that just beat pettis and gomi. gill has not even beat anyone as good as either one. anderson also got submitted in 04 by chonan so im sure chonan can beat him again. ???????????? i thinks its odd that hes not in ufc if hes so great

Poopyface TomatoNose site profile image  

12/15/11 5:46 PM by Poopyface TomatoNose

He got his Strikeforce belt by winning a decision over Clay Guida, the same person who Bendo is getting his shot from.

queazy site profile image  

12/15/11 5:07 PM by queazy

if el nino dosen't get passed mavs he can forget about ufc. and honestly can't see him being no 1 or beating a top ufc'er if he hasn't fought anyone nearly as good. and dont say aoki . He has an impressive record and is a good fighter, but how impressive is it when compared to other lw like edar or ben hen, maynard, diaz. I just dont see it. 19-2 but have only fought not even a handfull of talent these other guys have fought. Its gonna be a war, but nino has more than just to get by mavs to be claiming he wants the 1. GOOD LUCK> THE 155 class in ufc is the death zone. That is if you make it. BUT like all fighters in the game show us. DONT call your self great by your record, CHUMPS are just practice