UFC president Dana White said Gilbert Melendez was right back in the lightweight title picture after Benson Henderson dropped the belt. The Fight of the Night win over Diego Sanchez helps Melendez’s status, but he’s shown interest in fighting Khabib Nurmagomedov.
“I know this up-and-comer by the name of Khabib, I think people would like to see that match up,” said Melendez on FOX LA. “You know, he’s not the biggest name so business-wise it’s probably not the best move, but I’m intrigued by it. It would be a great challenge; everyone’s hyped him up.”
Melendez joined the UFC when Strikeforce closed and he was there premiere lightweight, having been their final champion. He’s 1-1 for the UFC and the loss was a split-decision to Henderson for the title.
Nurmagomedov is 21-0 and has won his last five since joining the UFC in 2012. Of his three wins this year, the most recent came from Pat Healy.
Neither individual is linked to a fight.