Melendez vs. Henderson, Cormier vs. Mir in April
Ask and you shall receive is the message for the successful Strikeforce alum, as Strikeforce heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier will get his long-awaited match with Frank Mir and Strikeforce lightweight champion Gilbert Melendez will be awarded a shot at Benson Henderson's title at UFC on FOX 7 on April 30th at the HP Pavilion in San Jose, California.
The lightweight title unification fight will serve as the main event on the network card.
The time has come I'll b fighting for the UFC belt on 4-20 HP Pavilion. Come support. Let's do this!
— Gilbert Melendez (@GilbertMelendez) January 15, 2013
Cormier was originally scheduled to fight Mir in a cross-promotional bout a few months ago, but Mir had to withdraw due to injury. The undefeated former Olympian's aggressive and tireless wrestling is yet to be compromised inside the cage, his most recent victory a second round TKO over Dion Staring last weekend.
Following the victory at the Strikeforce Finale, Cormier immediately called out Mir, then said he would like to fight light heavyweight champion Jon Jones next.
After discovering that he would indeed get the fight he wanted against Mir, the undefeated heavyweight once again mentioned Jones.
So,this is my next question.So beat Mir and then ask for @jonnyboneswill they give me what I want again. I don't mind asking. I'm gon try!
— Daniel Cormier (@dc_mma) January 15, 2013
Mir hasn't fought since being knocked out by former champion Junior Dos Santos at UFC 146. Before the defeat, however, Mir was riding a three fight win-streak over Mirko Cro Cop, Roy Nelson and Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira.
Both Henderson and Melendez have reigned supreme over the lightweight division of their respective organizations, with thirteen consecutive victories and seven title defenses between the pair. Henderson recently defended his title for a second time when he completely dominated Melendez's long time training partner Nate Diaz at UFC on FOX 5. Melendez's latest defense was an exciting yet close split decision win over Josh Thomson last May.
"I am beyond thrilled to be competing again on network TV for the UFC on FOX 7 card against Gilbert Melendez.," Henderson said. "It's an honor to be put in this position by both the UFC and FOX executives, who are placing trust in me to be able to deliver another exciting fight on live TV. The fans can expect to see a lot of action from two fighters who have aggressive styles. It should be a fun night.
"Gilbert Melendez is one of the toughest fighters on the planet. I've said over and over that I just wan to fight the best in the world. I don't care in what order I face them, but I want to fight the best in the biggest fights."
A worthy challenge to Henderson's title, Melendez will attempt to avenge the loss of his Cesar Gracie teammate while Cormier will look to make a brutal statement by dismantling yet another top heavyweight contender in his UFC debut.
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