Gilbert Melendez impressed everybody last weekend with his first-round drubbing of former Pride and Dream fighter Tatsuya Kawajiri to solidify his place among the best lightweights in the world.

Following a year layoff, Melendez came back guns blazing and didn’t stop until Kawajiri was finished. In the end, he laid claim to the top of the lightweight mountain.

Now comes the interesting part of finding the next opponent for Melendez.

Rumors started circling right after his fight with Kawajiri that the UFC was thinking about bringing in a title contender to face Melendez next. Names like Jim Miller started popping up right away, but it appears that fight or any cross-promotional fight won’t be Melendez’s next title defense.

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