Posts Tagged ‘Gilbert Melendez’

By Jonathan King The Clinch Report

This weekend the UFC will put forth a pay per view caliber fight card, that will be featured for free on FOX. Not only will the lightweight title be on the line, but Strikeforce Heavyweight Champion Daniel Cormier will make his long anticipated debut in the UFC.

Jordan Mein  vs. Matt Brown  

The resurgent Matt Brown has proved that if a fighter wants to stay in the UFC he has to improve once he has arrived. Brown is in the midst of a 4 fight win streak, and is looking to solidify his chances for a possible contender slot. Mein is looking for his second UFC win after defeating the always game Dan Miller by TKO in his last outing. Mein should be technically proficient in the striking department, but Brown is notorious for his tenacity. Prediction: Brown via Split Decision

Nate Diaz  vs. Josh Thomson

Nate Diaz is one of the most talented fighters in the UFC. His boxing skill is unrivaled in the division, and even if you can put him on his back, his submission skills are just as refined. However, in his last performance Benson Henderson completely dismantled the Stockton native, beating him at his own game. Josh Thompson is no stranger to the Cesar Gracie team, having faced Gilbert Melendez 3 times already. Thompson is a hell of an athlete, who even at 34 years old is still extremely dangerous in the division. Prediction: Diaz via Unanimous Decision

Daniel Cormier  vs. Frank Mir

Frank Mir is and has been a top ranked heavyweight for nearly 10 years. As a former champion, he has the skill to end the fight in any position with either a strike, or a submission. He also does not like being considered a stepping stone (see Brock Lesnar first fight)! Daniel Cormier is the best wrestler in the division which alone presents problems, but Cormier can also turn out the lights with his heavy hands. Mir could very well grab a hold of a limb during a take down, but this fight might not ever make it there. Predictions Cormier via TKO RD 2

Benson Henderson* vs Gilbert Melendez 5 Round 155 lbs Title Fight (*Champion)

Finally, ‘El Nino’ Gilbert Melendez will be making his octagon debut, and he does so in an immediate title fight. Coming in as the Strikeforce champion Melendez for a long time has been considered one of the to 3 lightweight fighters in the world. His durable style suits either the quick knockout, or the five round battle. He sets up his powerful hands with excellent feigns, and has great take down skills as well. Benson Henderson is one of the biggest lightweight fighters around. The champions power begins with his tree trunk like legs, that power one of the most athletic frames in all of MMA. As a striker Henderson has great power, and even better timing, often beginning and ending combinations with balance shattering leg kicks. Once Henderson achieves top position, he is nearly impossible to sweep. Make sure you use the bathroom before the fight begins! Prediction: Henderson via Split Decision (Fight of the Night)

By: Jonathan King The Clinch Report


Rumors in the MMA world were bouncing like crazy this week, when TMZ prematurely reported that Ronda Rousey became the first ever woman fighter signed to the UFC. In a way, TMZ was correct but not in the traditional sense. The truth is Ronda Rousey is and has been signed under the Zuffa umbrella for quite some time.

In March 2011 Zuffa purchased the struggling California-based promotion, most believed the company would be folded in immediately, as was the WEC previously. However, Zuffa maintained the separation of both entities when Dana White was unable to negotiate a new television deal with Showtime; which consequently expires in February. After cancelling the last two events it was obvious that Zuffa’s red-headed step child was going to soon be left for dead. One obvious question beams. What happens to the fighters like Rousey, who are already under contract with Strikeforce.

The answer is still being debated, however several sources in China for the UFC of FUEL TV 6 event have confirmed that the UFC will not need to ‘sign’ any of these fighters, because they are already signed. They simply have to continue honoring their end of the deal. since Zuffa is the parent company for both entities, the UFC will simply pick and chose the fighters they want to keep, and fold them into to the current roster. Those that the UFC brass deem not to be ready, or worthy will surely be bought out of the remaining time left on their contract.

Is this large influx of talent good for the UFC? Unlike the WEC buyout(which brought two new weight classes), most of the upper echelon fighters in Strikeforce will be entering already congested waters. For fighters such as Luke Rockhold, Gilbert Melendez, Nate Marquardt, and Daniel Cormier there is not much to worry about. As the top dogs they will certainly be brought into the UFC realm. The women’s division  it seems would also be safe, as the UFC will need someone for Rousey to fight!. However the rest of the roster, aside from a few big name contenders are left in limbo.

Any infusion of talent should lead to more exciting fights. However, with the roster already swollen more events must result. Another interesting thought will be the importation of fighters into the Bellator tournament format, which is in need of a talent infusion.

All of this remains “unofficial” for now Strikeforce has one event left on their docket, but the writing is on the wall. Strikeforce’s imminent demise will certainly allow some other promotion to rise from the depths of obscurity. Rumors are already swirling that Showtime and CFA are in talks to pick up where Strikeforce left off. One man gathers what another man spills!