Report: Diego Sanchez fighting Gilbert Melendez this fall

Kyle Terada-US PRESSWIRE

For a few weeks now Diego Sanchez has been waiting for an opponent for UFC 164. Now that he's finally got one, it turns out he won't actually be appearing on the card.

A few weeks ago Diego Sanchez was reported as part of the UFC 164 lineup. No opponent was named at the time, but the date was set. Now an opponent has been given, but the dates are changing. Diego Sanchez will face off against recent lightweight no. 1 contender, Gilbert Melendez, sometime this fall. MMAjunkie had the report:

...multiple sources close to the fighters on Thursday told MMAjunkie.com that Sanchez is targeted for a fight against former Strikeforce champion Gilbert Melendez (21-3 MMA, 0-1 UFC) this fall, likely in October or November.

It's a good fight for both fighters. Coming off his win (more or less) over Takanori Gomi at UFC on Fuel TV: Silva vs. Stann, Sanchez has reaffirmed his place as an upper-tier lightweight, and given his long history with the promotion he has the perfect mix of status and accomplishment to give Melendez a name, but winnable, fight. Questionable judging aside, Sanchez is 3-2 since losing his title shot to BJ Penn, with both his losses coming at welterweight. If he want's to prove that he's still one of the top lightweights in the world this is his best opportunity to do so.

For Melendez, this has all the feeling of a bounceback fight. Sanchez is a game opponent, and tough as they come, but Melendez has distinct advantages in almost every area the fight could go. If Melendez wants to get another title shot quickly, a decisive win over Diego would go a long way toward ensuring he gets a second crack at the belt.

As stated, no date has been set for the fight, but at the rate the UFC has been filling out their fall cards I expect a more official announcement is right around the corner.

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