On September 29th at the Power Balance Pavilion in Sacramento, CA, Melendez will put his belt on the line for the fifth time since becoming the undisputed lightweight title holder. “Anytime you see Gilbert Melendez fight in the cage, it’s a special occassion and Pat Healy has earned his way back up to get that shot. So, I’m pumped up. This is a fight that I think both guys really want to showcase their skills and I think that if Gilbert underestimates Pat, he could be in trouble.”
As for the possibility fans get a Melendez-Josh Thomson 4 Coker didn’t rule it out, but said it won’t happen in the near future.
“Those guys together put on some of the most amazing fights that I’ve seen in person in my MMA promoting career. It’s a fight I could watch once a month and enjoy it,” Coker said. “Josh would love to fight Gilbert. Let’s say he gets through Caros Fodor, which is not going to be any easy task because Caros is a tough, tough guy from Matt Hughes gym. So, he’s going to be prepared and he’s going to be in great shape and ready to throwdown, so Josh is going to have his hands full. And we’ll take it from there. You never know what happens in the future, but for right now we’re going to fight these guys separately. I think three is enough for right now.”
As of late, Ronda Rousey has been all the talk since calling out Cristiane “Cyborg” Santos following her sixth 1st round armbar win in her professional MMA career. Though she’s become a phenomenon, Coker said it wasn’t always that way. “She has definitely proved herself. Early on when we started promoting her, people were giving us a hard time about giving her a title shot, but I didn’t believe in any of that,” Coker stated. “We had no problem letting her fight the best and she’s proven herself. Don’t let looks fool you, she’s a dangerous athlete.”
Whether or not a fight between Rousey and Cyborg happens, Coker seemed positive that it’s on the horizon. “I personally would like to see that fight. I think that fight should happen. I think that fight will happen. It’s just a going to be matter of time. Let Cyborg come off of her suspension and then we’ll start talking to her camp and now she’s represented by Tito Ortiz actually. So, we’ll be talking to Tito pretty soon about what happens next, but right now guys, she’s under suspension and we really can’t do anything.”
Coker also added that Ronda wanting Cyborg to come down to bantamweight to fight her, a weight class some feel she can’t make, is by no means a ploy by Ronda to avoid fighting her. “Do you think Ronda is scared of anybody? I can tell you this right now, this girl has no fear. She is afraid of no person, place, or thing. She’s a fighter and she’s going to be ready to fight when the time is right and Cyborg’s the same. I don’t think she’s afraid of anything either and that’s what makes this fight so compelling and it should happen because it’s the fight that everybody wants to see.”