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Gilbert Melendez Excited By Prospect Of Fighting In UFC, But Staying Focused On Masvidal

Though the winner of Clay Guida and Ben Henderson have a strong claim to a shot at the UFC lightweight title, following champion Frankie Edgar’s recent defense against Gray Maynard, all most people can talk about is a match-up between The Answer and current Strikeforce lightweight champion Gilbert Melendez.

Though Melendez lacks a resume full of wins over UFC opponents, he is still widely considered to be one of the very best lightweights in the world. UFC president Dana White has said many times over the past few weeks that he is very eager to bring El Niño into the UFC fold and Melendez revealed today on’s The MMA Hour that the two finally met recently to discuss his future in the promotion.

“I just wanted to discuss my future with the organization,” Melendez told host Ariel Helwani. “It looks like I have a good future. … I just expressed that I want to fight the best.”

Deeming the UFC title “the best title,” Melendez admits that he’s very excited by the prospect of competing on the world’s biggest stage for MMA. However, he is currently slated to defend his Strikeforce title against Jorge Masvidal this December and, until he hears for sure that that fight is off, he’s doing his best to remain focused on it.

“I’ve been focusing on Jorge Masvidal,” he said. “He’s the first guy in line. I think he’s the No. 1 contender, as of now, in Strikeforce, and as of now I have to focus on that guy. He’s real tough. But it’s hard not to get excited when you hear all these rumors.”

The Cesar Gracie-trained Melendez sports an overall record of 19-2, his only losses coming by decision to Josh Thomson and Mitsuhiro Ishida.